Pancreatitis is, essentially, the inflammation of the pancreas. An important part of the digestive system, the pancreas plays a vital and active role in digestion and the regulation of glucose levels in the body. It is also responsible for the body’s supply of insulin and glucagon. These hormones work in contrast with each other in regulating glucose levels, with the former lowering blood glucose levels and the latter raising them. There are two known types of pancreatitis: acute and chronic. The first type can usually be treated; the second one, however, cannot be cured and can permanently damage the pancreas. Chronic pancreatitis is also known to lead to diabetes if not addressed immediately or if there is too much damage to the pancreas.
Symptoms of Pancreatitis
When the pancreas becomes inflamed, it can affect the entire digestive system because the pancreas is not working as it should. Since the pancreas plays a vital role in helping the body convert glucose into energy, inflammation can affect an individual’s lifestyle as a whole. Pancreatitis can manifest itself in the form of recurrent episodes of abdominal pain and sudden weight loss; at times, it can also be asymptomatic, making treatment difficult. It can also lead to serious complications, such as infections, tissue damage, and severe bleeding. Without proper diagnosis and treatment, the condition can become life-threatening.
Possible symptoms include:
- Mild jaundice
- Weight loss
- Fatty stools
Treatment usually requires prolonged hospitalization and medication. The treatment approach will largely depend on whether you’ve been suffering from the condition for a long time or not. It is possible for an individual to experience a sudden attack of pancreatitis. Regardless of the type, however, the general goal of treatment is to help the pancreas rest and heal. As such, patients being treated for the condition will likely be asked to refrain from eating for a period of 3-7 days.
Drug Side Effects
Yaz pancreatitis is one of several Yaz side effects commonly found in women using the birth control drug Yaz or Yasmin. It is believed that the synthetic progestin drospirenone contained in the drug puts users of Yaz at risk of pancreatitis. The FDA has also warned women suffering from hypertriglyceridemia and those with a family history of pancreatitis against the use of Yaz and other drospirenone-containing drugs.