The pancreas is an organ located behind the stomach that secretes juices to help digest food, as well as produce hormones (such as insulin and glucagon) to regulate blood sugar levels. Examples of noncancerous pancreatic disorders include:
- Pancreatitis: inflammation of the pancreas, which can be short-term (acute), long-term (chronic), or recurrent
- Pancreatic cysts and pseudocysts (sacs containing pancreatic fluid that may develop in patients with pancreatitis)
- Pancreatic divisum (a birth defect in which parts of the pancreas fail to join together)
- Pancreatic stones (blockage of a pancreatic duct by a gallstone)
The specialists in the Center for Advanced Digestive Care (CADC) at NewYork-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center are experienced in diagnosing and treating pancreatic disorders. An interdisciplinary team of gastrointestinal specialists in endoscopy, radiology, and surgery works together to provide each patient with coordinated, advanced, and individualized care. Please contact our Advanced Interventional Endoscopy team to discuss your case.
Symptoms of Noncancerous Pancreatic Disorders
Depending on their type and stage, disorders of the pancreas may cause symptoms such as nausea and vomiting, upper abdominal pain that radiates into the back, jaundice, weight loss, and fever. Some disorders, such as pancreatic divisum, may cause no symptoms at all.
Diagnosing Noncancerous Pancreatic Disorders
- Imaging tests such as CT scanning and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
- Functional testing using secretin-stimulated magnetic resonance imaging
- Endoscopic ultrasound (EUS)
- Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP)
- Probe-based confocal endomicroscopy
- Narrow band imaging of the pancreatic duct
Treatment of Noncancerous Pancreatic Disorders
We employ extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy (ESWL) to treat large pancreatic stones, the same way it is used to treat kidney stones.