By Peter Melamed, PhD
Pancreas is an essential but forgotten organ in the human body with several tasks and functions. Right now, there are no valuable and safe treatments to bring back pancreatic functions that are weakened by chronic pancreatitis.
You may say that chronic pancreatitis is not a common disorder. Statistically, nearly 220,000 patients with acute pancreatitis were admitted to non-government hospitals in 2007. This amount did not include people, who had the treatment in the government hospitals or outpatient clinics by PCP. This statistics also missed people without current medical insurance and those, who had treatment using alternative methods or believed their condition is not life-threatened and did not seek out medical care.
Even the earliest mild attack of the pancreatitis is an alarm bell that shows that there is a potential of developing chronic pancreatitis in the future, especially if whatever causes it, is not resolved in a timely manner.
Today, chronic pancreatitis is a medical paradox. For instance, diagnosis and treatments of a chronic pancreatitis regularly initiate from the end rather than the beginning. It is not a mistake.
Look, in all medical textbooks and articles, description of the chronic pancreatitis begins with symptoms such as constant, unbearable pains, indigestion, continuous diarrhea with floating, oily stools, and severe illness with losing body mass. Medical researchers consider that there is just 10% of the pancreatic capacity left in this condition.
Chronic pancreatitis does not suddenly appear without symptoms. From the first attack of the acute pancreatitis to full-blown chronic pancreatitis, it takes 8-15 years. During that time, pancreas loses 90% percent of its function. We cannot blame someone. There are some reasons for the delayed diagnosis and treatment of a chronic pancreatitis.
Practically, the first, mild, after alcohol attack of the pancreatitis with upper abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, distention, low appetite, fever, diarrhea can be misdiagnosed. Mild attack of the acute pancreatitis can mimic food poisoning, stomach flu, acute dyspepsia, acid reflux, gastritis, IBS, heart attack, sphincter of Oddi dysfunction (SOD), gallbladder stones attack, parasites, acute alcohol or drugs intoxication, etc.
Unfortunately, there are no standard, noninvasive tests to diagnose mild, acute pancreatitis.
If the symptoms can mimic various gastrointestinal disorders and lab tests are okay, initial attack of the pancreatitis is overlooked.
Severe acute pancreatitis usually brings patient to the hospital. After the improvement from the acute pancreatitis, the person obtains indistinct advice “Do not drink alcohol “or “Spicy and fatty foods are bad for you,” leaves hospital, and continues the detrimental eating habits and unhealthy lifestyle. Some sufferers of acute pancreatitis have no luck; the overall mortality rate for severe acute pancreatitis is 10-15 percent.
What can happen during the time when patient is loosing the 90% of the pancreatic function?
Chronic diseases of the inner organs’ include three stages: functional, structural, and final; failure of the organ. It all happens in the case of chronic pancreatitis.
In functional stage of a chronic pancreatitis, there are only some biochemical changes in the pancreatic juice with declining in the quality and capacity of the digestive enzymes. It leads to the symptoms of digestive disorders such as heartburn, fullness, constant gas, nausea after meals, diarrhea or constipation, and insignificant abdominal pain. Lab tests and imaging tests look normal, so patients’ receive symptomatic therapy with the medications. Some of these patients obtain psych labels and treatment.
Most of the patients with functional stage of a chronic pancreatitis do not make any positive changes in their lifestyle. They continue drinking alcohol, unhealthy eating, smoking, etc. Unfortunately, pancreas does not have self-healing. Activated within the pancreatic gland digestive enzymes continue to break apart the structure of the pancreatic tissue. Pancreas loses the tissue and function. After many consultations and imaging tests, patient finally obtain diagnose of the “chronic pancreatitis,”
Because of functional disorder leads to the structural damage, it causes constant pain and indigestion. Many symptoms are associated now with the low quality of the digestive enzymes, deficiency of the essential nutrients, side effects of the treatment, dysbiosis (Candida-yeast overgrowth, small intestine bacterial overgrowth (SIBO), inner toxicity, low immunity, hormonal problems, depression, etc. Frequently, these persons undergo endoscopic surgeries due to substantial structural damages. Some of the patients lose their gallbladder because of the bile stones with no changes at all. Treatment with symptomatic therapy does not stop the damage of the pancreas.
When there is only 10 percent of the pancreatic tissue left, symptoms of the severe pancreatic deficiency occur, which are described in the medical literature as symptoms of a chronic pancreatitis. Therapeutic options in the pancreas failure are very narrow.
Even among world famous specialists in the pancreatic health, researchers, doctors, gastroenterologists, surgeons, there is no consensus on the mechanism of the development and treatment of a chronic pancreatitis. No wonder, nowadays there are no safe and efficient methods to enhance pancreatic function that is reduced by chronic pancreatitis. There is no effective way to control pain and diarrhea in patients with the chronic pancreatitis. Many of these people join the army of addicts after taking painkillers and psych drugs.
What can be done here? Keeping the digestive enzymes inactive within the pancreas is the key to managing chronic pancreatitis. It is known that acidity is a primary reason for the beginning and worsening of the pancreatitis. I clarify that in my EBook and article “Chronic Metabolic Acidosis Destroys Pancreas.” Metabolic acidosis is a medical term for whole body acidity.
Pancreas and liver are alkaline glands because they produce extremely alkaline pancreatic juice and alkaline bile. Alkalinity of these fluids is necessary for proper function of the pancreas.
On the other hand, whole body acidity creates harmful acidic changes in the biochemistry of the pancreatic juice and bile. Consecutively, it activates the digestive enzymes’ inside the pancreas causing self-digestion, pancreatic injury, and pancreatitis.
Uncontrolled enzymatic reaction is very similar to uncontrolled nuclear reaction. Damage to the part of the nuclear reactor can destroy and shut down the entire nuclear power facility. Everybody knows what happened during the disaster at Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi and Chernobyl nuclear power facilities. Even small damage of the pancreas may lead to undesirable, prolonged, uncontrolled activation of pancreatic enzymes and the development of chronic pancreatitis.
Acidification of the bile is also dangerous because it causes precipitation of the aggressive bile acids. Bile acids eat away the walls of the gallbladder, bile ducts, sphincter of Oddi, and duodenum generating irritation, inflammation, spasms, bile reflux. If even a little amount of the aggressive bile acids appears in the pancreatic duct, it activates digestive enzymes inside pancreas and causes pancreatitis. Moreover, acidity in the bile produces gallbladder stones, which can block the pancreatic duct and also can lead to pancreatitis.
Without healthy, slightly alkaline body’s balance, it is impossible to control and take care of a chronic pancreatitis. Are you acidic or not? The simple home test may say that. Check your saliva and urine pH with the litmus paper in the morning and evening. The pH less than 6.6 is a sign of the whole body acidity and may presume acidic pancreatic juice and bile.
If you have digestive problems and recognize the harm of the whole body acidity, you will want to make your body slightly alkaline. How? Three natural, non-drug, proven ways can reduce acidity of the pancreatic juice and bile.
- Alkaline Diet that is filled with the natural digestive enzymes
- Ingestion of the Cellular Magnesium-Potassium
- Drinking healing mineral water made from the genuine Karlovy Vary thermal spring salt
European doctors have used customized, healing diets to help out patients with the chronic pancreatitis for a hundred of years. On the contrary, consuming unhealthy, harmful combinations of sugars, starches, fats, proteins, various acidic-forming foods, and drinking alcohol can lead to the whole body acidity. As a result, it stimulates premature activation of the digestive enzymes inside the pancreas.
Magnesium and potassium are critical in health of the pancreas. They both promote the producing of the digestive enzymes and the alkalinity of the pancreatic juice and bile. By clinical research, in patients with chronic pancreatitis and consequent pancreatic deficiency and diarrhea usually shortage of magnesium occurs. Deficiency of magnesium in the alcohol addicts may be one of the reasons of the alcoholic chronic pancreatitis. Organic acids salts of the magnesium and potassium (Cellular Magnesium-Potassium) naturally present in the human body and they are particularly appropriate for persons with the chronic pancreatitis.
How about drinking of healing mineral water? It is an unknown remedy for the laypersons and medical practitioners in the U.S. In contrast, European doctors and public are familiar with the healing power of the mineral waters. The healing mineral water from thermal springs in a small Czech town Karlovy Vary is the most known and medically researched. It is hard to imagine that the first medical description of Karlovy Vary water was printed about 500 years ago. Because of the significant demand, European doctors have proposed the process of vaporizing of the thermal spring water to get the mineral salt, for 250 years ago.
Dissolving the genuine Karlovy Vary spring salt in the warm water makes possible to have healing mineral water at home. Books and medical papers of the European doctors and researchers’ confirm that Karlovy Vary healing mineral water could aid those with chronic pancreatitis. The Karlovy Vary healing mineral water consists of the minerals, trace elements, and bicarbonate, which can make alkaline bile and pancreatic juice. It boosts up the quality of the pancreatic enzymes; hence, promotes healthy digestion, reduces pain and pancreatic inflammation.
What else can be useful for a person with a chronic pancreatitis? Published medical papers, clinical researches and evidence support that healing actions of the antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, enzymes, probiotics, essential trace elements and amino acids, phytonutrients, healing mineral water, etc in chronic pancreatitis. The natural, alternative medicine treatments may also help with the cessation of alcohol and drugs and addiction to painkillers. Addiction to painkillers is very common in people with a chronic pancreatitis.
Acupuncture and herbs are frequently employed all over the globe for treatment of a chronic pancreatitis. It can reduce pain, inflammation, and indigestion, boost immunity, and improve mood and sleep. A warm abdominal massage, the chiropractic adjustments, and medical hypnosis or hypnosis custom CD can promote the well-being in the chronic pancreatitis, as well.
Medical professionals all over the globe widely employ natural, non-surgical, drug-free, and pointing to the roots of the problem treatment for the chronic pancreatitis with the encouraging results. The sooner the treatment is started, the better the result.
The information in this article is presented for educational, informational purposes only. It is not intended as a substitute for the diagnosis, treatment, and advice of a qualified licensed professional.