Best Treatment Options for Chronic Pancreatitis

The best treatment options for chronic pancreatitis depend on the underlying cause of the disease and the stage of the condition. Treatment options for chronic pancreatitis may include:

  1. Lifestyle changes: Quitting smoking, reducing alcohol consumption, and maintaining a healthy diet and exercise routine can help slow the progression of chronic pancreatitis.
  2. Medications: Medications such as pain relievers, anti-inflammatory drugs, and enzymes can be used to manage pain and inflammation. In some cases, antispasmodic medications may be used to relieve muscle spasms in the pancreas.
  3. Surgery: In some cases, surgery may be needed to repair or remove damaged pancreas tissue, drain fluid from the pancreas or to remove gallbladder.
  4. Endoscopic therapy: endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) may be used to remove gallstones, unblock bile ducts, and treat other structural problems in the pancreas.
  5. Supportive care: People with chronic pancreatitis may need to receive supportive care to manage the symptoms and complications of the disease. This may include treatment for malnutrition, diabetes, and pain management.
  6. Monitoring: Regular monitoring of the pancreas function, including blood tests, imaging studies, and endoscopic ultrasound may be necessary to assess the progression of the disease and to adjust the treatment plan as needed.

Diet tips that might be helpful

Always check with your doctor or dietician before changing your eating habits when you have pancreatitis. Here are some tips they might suggest:

  • Eat between six and eight small meals throughout the day to help recover from pancreatitis. This is easier on your digestive system than eating two or three large meals.
  • Use MCTs as your primary fat since this type of fat does not require pancreatic enzymes to be digested. MCTs can be found in coconut oil and palm kernel oil and is available at most health food stores.
  • Avoid eating too much fiber at once, as this can slow digestion and result in less-than-ideal absorption of nutrients from food. Fiber may also make your limited amount of enzymes less effective.
  • Take a multivitamin supplement to ensure that you’re getting the nutrition you need.

It’s worth noting that, treatment for chronic pancreatitis is aimed at slowing the progression of the disease, managing the symptoms and complications, and preventing further damage to the pancreas. Additionally, it’s important to work with a healthcare provider to determine the underlying cause of chronic pancreatitis and develop an appropriate treatment plan.