Pancreatitis in Denver, CO

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Pancreatitis develops when the pancreas becomes swollen and inflamed and is restricted from conducting its critical duties. Located in the abdomen, the pancreas aids in digestion. This gland releases important digestive substances called enzymes into the small intestine to help digest food and it also emits insulin and glucagon into the blood circulatory system. These two hormones help the body to control the way it converts glucose for energy.

This condition might develop in different forms. The acute form of pancreatitis describes the abrupt, brief swelling of the pancreas. The majority of cases of acute pancreatitis completely resolve with the right kind of treatment. Chronic pancreatitis often occurs more gradually and can last much longer. Cases of chronic pancreatitis are generally linked to heavy alcohol intake.

Our gastroenterology physicians are proud to offer pancreatitis treatment in Denver, CO. If you or a family member has been diagnosed with pancreatitis, experienced care is available through Denver Digestive Health Specialists.

Cases of pancreatitis develop when the digestive proteins called enzymes discussed above activate prematurely and start to attack and inflame the pancreas. The leading causes of pancreatitis include:

  • Metabolic conditions
  • Smoking cigarettes
  • Certain medications
  • Gallstones
  • Cystic fibrosis
  • High calcium levels
  • Abdominal injuries
  • Elevated triglyceride levels in the blood
  • Family history of pancreatitis
  • Trauma or injury
  • Overactive parathyroid gland
  • Alcohol use
  • Autoimmune disease
  • Abdominal surgery
  • Pancreatic cancer
  • Infection

Several symptoms can occur when the pancreas becomes inflamed. The common signs and symptoms of pancreatitis are:

  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Upper abdominal pain that radiates to your back, especially after eating
  • Foul-smelling, oily stools
  • Abdominal tenderness or swelling
  • Increased heart rate
  • Pain in the upper abdomen
  • Fever

If you notice these symptoms or require treatment for pancreatitis in Denver, CO, we encourage you to contact our gastroenterology facility today.

Treatment approaches for acute pancreatitis typically include fasting to rest the pancreas, pain medications, and intravenous (IV) fluids. When pancreatitis is severe enough, then surgery might be required to clear away the damaged or dead areas if an infection develops. When acute cases of pancreatitis are due to gallstones, pancreatitis could be treated with a surgical procedure to remove the gallbladder. Our expert providers at Denver Digestive Health Specialists can suggest the best method of care.

Treatment methods for chronic pancreatitis treatment may include:

  • Low-fat diet
  • Administration of enzymes to improve digestive function
  • Stop smoking
  • Insulin
  • Pancreatic surgery
  • Avoid consuming alcoholic beverages
  • Adjusted diet – usually low fat
  • Procedures to remove biliary obstructions
  • Treatment for alcohol addiction
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How can dietary changes help prevent pancreatitis flare-ups?

One of the most effective ways to manage pancreatitis is by adopting a diet that minimizes stress on the pancreas. A diet low in fats, especially saturated fats, is essential since high-fat foods can trigger the pancreas to release digestive enzymes, potentially worsening the condition. Eating small, frequent meals can also help by preventing the pancreas from becoming overworked. Adding easily digestible, antioxidant-rich foods like fruits, vegetables, and whole grains to your diet can improve digestive health and reduce inflammation.

Is pancreatitis possible in children?

Although rare, children can develop pancreatitis. Pancreatitis can be caused by various factors, including abdominal trauma, certain medications, infections, congenital abnormalities in the pancreatic structure, or genetic factors. Symptoms in children may resemble those in adults, including abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, and elevated pancreatic enzymes. Prompt diagnosis and treatment are crucial to avoid complications and ensure proper management.

How can pancreatitis affect your overall health?

The complications from pancreatitis can vary depending on whether the condition is acute or chronic.

Most individuals with acute pancreatitis recover over time without lasting effects. While most patients experience a full recovery, some may develop fluid collections near the pancreas that might require medical drainage.

Chronic pancreatitis, however, often involves a longer recovery process after multiple episodes. This form carries a higher risk of persistent complications, including diabetes, weight loss, ongoing pain, and an increased risk of pancreatic cancer.

Should you or a loved one be diagnosed with pancreatitis, it is important to get treatment from a skilled gastrointestinal physician. Regardless of whether your pancreatitis is acute or chronic, the gastroenterologists at Denver Digestive Health Specialists can provide the personalized treatment you need. We are dedicated to providing patient-centered care with the greatest clinical standards. To locate a gastrointestinal specialist offering pancreatic care in Denver, CO, please request an appointment with our practice today.

I haven’t been in the office for my appointment yet but my experience on the phone with Debra was great! I’ve been on the phone quite a bit with medical receptionists and she gave the best experience which was comforting thank you! Will leave another after my appointment next month :)

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I find Dr. Miller a caring, compassionate, professional. I would not hesitate to recommend him to anyone in need of his expertise. Thank you Dr Miller for all you have done for me.

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Dr. New was very thorough. Listened to issues I was having. Would definitely recommend him. The office was very efficient.

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I really appreciated the doctor coming out and calling the patient back instead of the assistant. More personal

L.M. Google

Daniel Siegel is an excellent gastroenterologist and I would recommend him to anyone! Dr. Siegel approaches his patients’ unique circumstances methodically and thoughtfully, making sure to get to the root of the problem rather than applying a “quick fix.” He shows that he genuinely cares about his patients’ well-being, and I’ve come to trust his judgment tremendously. After years of symptoms and issues, I went to see Dr. Siegel and he was able to determine the root cause of my issues and identify a solution relatively quickly, and got me on the right path toward feeling better. A year and a half later, I’m significantly healthier and feel significantly better. I wish I would have gone in to see him sooner!

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