What are the long-term consequences of pancreatitis?
With acute pancreatitis there is usually no long term damage, and often no further problems develop. Chronic pancreatitis, which may present as a series of acute attacks or as an ongoing upset can cause permanent damage. As the pancreas becomes more scarred, some people develop diabetes and/or the inability to digest foods, especially fats. The lack of normal pancreatic enzymes may lead to adverse effects on food digestion and waste production, causing abdominal pain, greasy stools, and formation of stones in the pancreas. Even if the disease is controlled, the damage done is often irreversible. If the disease progresses, it could lead to death.
Acute pancreatitis usually causes no long term damage, and often no further problems develop. Chronic pancreatitis may follow a series of acute attacks, but is almost always due to many years of alcohol abuse. It causes permanent pancreatic damage with scarring and calcium deposits. Some people develop diabetes. There is often difficulty digesting foods, especially fats, causing abdominal pain, pale, bulky, greasy stools and loss of weight.