Search the Health Library
Get the facts on diseases, conditions, tests and procedures.
I Want To...
I Want To...
Find Research Faculty
Enter the last name, specialty or keyword for your search below.
School of Medicine
I Want to...
Pancreatitis is an inflammation of the pancreas. The pancreas produces juices that help digest food in the small intestine. It also produces insulin, which controls the sugar level in your blood.
Acute Pancreatitis: What You Need to Know
- Pancreatitis, an inflammation of the pancreas, can arise suddenly; it may be accompanied by severe abdominal pain.
- In the United States, 80 percent of the cases of acute pancreatitis are related to alcohol use or biliary stones.
- Your doctor may use Endoscopic Retrograde Cholangiopancreatography (ERCP), a specialized test to view your pancreatic and bile ducts, to diagnose pancreatitis.
- Endoscopic therapy and surgery are often used to treat pancreatitis.
Acute pancreatitis arises suddenly and may be accompanied by severe abdominal pain. There are different types of pancreatitis, including mild, moderate or severe. In mild pancreatitis, there are rarely complications or organ dysfunction and the patients recover completely. Severe pancreatitis may lead to pancreatic dysfunction, other complications and a long, complicated recovery.
Read a more in-depth article about acute pancreatitis, written by Johns Hopkins gastroenterologists, which details the anatomical description of the causes of acute pancreatitis.
Read our FAQs about acute pancreatitis.
Why choose Johns Hopkins Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology for acute pancreatitis?
Years of research and experience mean that you can trust our physicians to expertly treat your pancreatitis.Meet our physicians:
Our Specialized Care
The Johns Hopkins Pancreatitis Center provides comprehensive multidisciplinary clinical care.Find out more about the services offered by the Pancreatitis Center.
When a woman finally found the right treatment for her chronic pancreatitis, it was at Johns Hopkins.Read her story.