Exocrine Pancreatic Insufficiency (EPI)

Exocrine pancreatic insufficiency (EPI) is a condition characterized by deficiency of the exocrine pancreatic enzymes, resulting in the inability to digest food properly, or maldigestion.

Pancreas Divisum

The human embryo begins life with two ducts in the pancreas, the ventral duct, and the dorsal duct. Normally, the two ducts will fuse together to form one main pancreatic duct; this occurs in more than 90% of embryos. In approximately 10% of embryos the ventral and dorsal ducts fail to fuse together, resulting in pancreas divisum.

Pancreatic Cysts

In general, there are two main varieties of pancreatic cysts based on the type of fluid they contain.  The most common cysts are either serous (containing a thin type of fluid) or mucinous (containing a thicker, more viscous fluid).  For the most part, serous cysts tend to be benign (non-cancerous).  Most of the mucinous cysts are benign as well although there are a few subtypes that can be more concerning.

Pancreatic Fluid Collections

Pancreatic fluid collections result from many causes, including damage to the pancreas or premalignant or malignant conditions.  Fluid collections can be large and cause symptoms such as pain and fevers, although most are smaller and asymptomatic.

Zollinger-Ellison Syndrome/Gastrinoma

Zollinger-Ellison syndrome is a rare disorder characterized by the development of a tumor called a Gastrinoma found in the pancreas and/or duodenum. Gastronoma’s secrete excessive levels of gastrin, a hormone that stimulates production of acid by the stomach.