Intensive Care Medicine

, Volume 29, Issue 5, pp 782–786 | Cite as

Long-term health-related quality of life in survivors of severe acute pancreatitis

  • Kimmo I. HalonenEmail author
  • Ville Pettilä
  • Ari K. Leppäniemi
  • Esko A. Kemppainen
  • Pauli A. Puolakkainen
  • Reijo K. Haapiainen



To evaluate the health-related quality of life (HRQL) and postdischarge outcome after severe acute pancreatitis.

Design and setting

Observational study in a department of surgery (surgical and general intensive care unit) in a tertiary care hospital.

Patients and participants

Of 283 patients with severe acute pancreatitis 211 survived; during a follow-up period an additional 27 died. The Rand 36-item Health Survey with accessory question was mailed to 174 eligible patients. The final study population comprised 145 patients (83% response rate). Age- and sex-matched Finnish population scores were compared with the study population; accessory questions were analyzed separately.


No clinically significant differences were found in long-term HRQL between study patients and the general population. Of the 145 patients 87% returned to work, 27% suffered recurrent pancreatitis, and 43% developed diabetes. Of 113 patients with alcohol-induced severe acute pancreatitis 30% were abstinent and 28% problem drinkers, alcohol-dependent, or alcoholics.


Up to 13% of severe acute pancreatitis patients surviving initial hospitalization die within a few years. Among the survivors long-term HRQL is comparable to that of the normal population. The majority return to work and reduce their alcohol consumption markedly.


Severeacute pancreatitis Quality of life Outcome 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kimmo I. Halonen
    • 1
    Email author
  • Ville Pettilä
    • 2
  • Ari K. Leppäniemi
    • 1
  • Esko A. Kemppainen
    • 1
  • Pauli A. Puolakkainen
    • 1
  • Reijo K. Haapiainen
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Gastroenterological and General SurgeryMeilahti Hospital, Helsinki University Central HospitalHelsinkiFinland
  2. 2.Department of Anesthesia and Intensive Care MedicineMeilahti Hospital, Helsinki University Central HospitalHelsinkiFinland

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