Clinical course and prognosis of chronic pancreatitis

Pancreas. 1987;2(4):378-85. doi: 10.1097/00006676-198707000-00003.


Course and prognosis of 125 patients with chronic pancreatitis (CP) were evaluated. Follow-up period ranged from 1-20 years with a median of 6.3 years. The following conclusions were obtained. Recent increase of CP in our clinics was ascribed to alcoholic CP and idiopathic CP in the aged. Of 106 patients with pain, 74 showed improvement or disappearance of pain. Drinking habit and observation period were the main factors determining the rate of pain relief. Serial endoscopic retrograde pancreatography (ERP) showed aggravation in 17/47 patients, cholecystokinin-pancreozymin (CCK-PZ) secretin test in 4/40 patients, and oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT) in 7/25 patients. Exocrine function showed improvement in five patients, whereas endocrine function showed none. Improvement or aggravation of exocrine function was closely related to drinking habit. Main complications included 15 cases of peptic ulcer, 19 of pancreatic pseudocyst, and 15 of bile duct stenosis. Twenty-six patients died, often due to malignant neoplasms and diabetic complications. Those who continued drinking as much showed a lower survival rate than those who discontinued or decreased alcohol intake. The socioeconomic status deteriorated often due to pain or alcoholism. Three patients had to degrade jobs and six fell into inactive social life.

MeSH terms

  • Age Factors
  • Alcoholism / complications
  • Calcinosis / complications
  • Cholecystokinin / metabolism
  • Chronic Disease
  • Female
  • Glucose Tolerance Test
  • Humans
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Pain
  • Pancreatitis / complications
  • Pancreatitis / physiopathology*
  • Peptic Ulcer / complications
  • Prognosis
  • Quality of Life
  • Sex Factors


  • Cholecystokinin