How to Prevent Pancreatitis

How Can I Keep From Getting Pancreatitis Again?

In order to prevent a recurrence of acute pancreatitis, it is important to know what caused it. The most common causes are gallstones and alcohol abuse. Other causes include medication and, in rare cases, metabolic disorders.

In general, once the cause has been identified and steps taken to prevent recurrence, both the pancreatitis and the progression to chronic pancreatitis are stopped.

Cause: Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism
If your acute pancreatitis was caused by alcohol abuse, seek counseling and support to stop drinking. Continued alcohol abuse can lead to more attacks of acute pancreatitis, destroy the pancreas, and cause chronic pancreatitis.

Cause: Gallstones
If you have gallstones, you should have your gall bladder removed after you recover from acute pancreatitis. Your gall bladder removal can be performed using a minimally invasive technique during the same hospitalization period. Prior to removing the gallbladder, your doctor may order additional tests to be certain that there are no gallstones in the bile ducts.

Cause: Medication
If your acute pancreatitis was caused by medication, that medication should be stopped and, if necessary, replaced with another.

Cause: Metabolic Disorder
Rare metabolic disorders that cause pancreatitis can be treated with medication.