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Conditions We Treat: Acute Pancreatitis

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

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  • 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.

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Why choose Johns Hopkins Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology for acute pancreatitis?

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Our Physicians

Years of research and experience mean that you can trust our physicians to expertly treat your pancreatitis.

Meet our physicians:


Pancreatitis Specialists, Dr. Vikesh Singh and Dr. Martin Makary

Our Specialized Care

The Johns Hopkins Pancreatitis Center provides comprehensive multidisciplinary clinical care.

Find out more about the services offered by the Pancreatitis Center.

Our Research

When a woman finally found the right treatment for her chronic pancreatitis, it was at Johns Hopkins.

Read her story.