Background: The secretin-pancreozymin test has been accepted as the gold standard for testing exocrine pancreatic function. However, this test is invasive, time-consuming, and expensive. Therefore, in daily practice, more simple, indirect methods are proposed.
Methods: The fecal concentration of human pancreatic elastase (E1) has been assessed for diagnostic sensitivity and specificity. For sensitivity, fecal E1 determination in 23 healthy children were studied.
Results: Sensitivity to detect pancreatic insufficiency was 100% and specificity 96%.
Conclusions: Fecal E1 concentration appears to be a more sensitive and specific test of pancreatic function than other tests.