What is the pancreas?
The pancreas is an oblong flattened gland, about six inches long, located deep in the abdomen, sandwiched between the stomach and the spine. It has five main parts – the tail, body, neck, head and uncinate process.
The pancreas is made up of glandular tissue and a system of ducts. The main duct is the pancreatic duct which runs the length of the pancreas. It drains the pancreatic fluid from the gland and carries it to the duodenum (the first part of the small intestine).
The main pancreatic duct merges with the bile duct to form the ampulla of Vater (a widening of the duct just before it enters the duodenum).