Effects upon the Pancreas of Disease in Various Organs and Systems

  • A. H. Cruickshank


It seems likely that a certain amount of disturbance of the function of the pancreas will occur during almost any severe illness especially when there is fever, bacteraemia and toxaemia, but studies of pancreatic function are usually irrelevant and unjustified in the diagnosis and treatment of such diseases. During scarlet fever, for example, Véghelyi (1949) demonstrated an increased output of pancreatic enzymes in the pancreatic juice and a rise in the pancreatic enzymes in the blood during the first days of the illness, followed, after the first week, by a fall in the activity of the pancreatic enzymes in the duodenal juice and a marked increase in the blood levels of these enzymes, with a return to normality during the fourth week. In illnesses in which shock has occurred, or if there has been hypothermia, the effects upon the pancreas may be very marked. The effects of shock and of hypothermia are discussed in the chapter on pancreatitis. In arterial disease, especially if hypertension of the mahgnant type is present or if there is periarteritis nodosa, there may be infarcts or other marked lesions in the pancreas and these lesions are discussed in a separate chapter. In cirrhosis of the liver and in ulcerative colitis it is common for a variety of lesions that have usually had no recognisable effects upon the patient’s illness to be found at autopsy, while in renal failure and some other conditions associated with dehydration, a characteristic type of acinar ectasia may be found in the pancreas, although there is seldom any clinical or biochemical evidence of pancreatic damage.


Systemic Lupus Erythematosus Cystic Fibrosis Acute Pancreatitis Acinar Cell Primary Biliary Cirrhosis 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • A. H. Cruickshank
    • 1
  1. 1.LiverpoolUK

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