The Risk of Pancreatic Cancer After Acute Pancreatitis

A recent study (J Kirkegard et al. Gastroenterol 2018; 154: 1729-36) determined that acute pancreatitis is associated with an increased risk of pancreatic cancer. This finding is based on a nationwide (Denmark), matched cohort study of all patients admitted with acute pancreatitis from 1980 to 2012.  This involved 41,669 patients with acute pancreatitis and 208,340 comparison subjects.

Key finding:

  • Five year pancreatic cancer risk was 0.87% compared to a risk of 0.13% in the comparison group (HR 2.02)

Limitations: While this study is based on a Danish registry, the authors note that the data had been prospectively entered and has a high validitiy.

My take: While I have not seen pancreatic cancer in the pediatric population, it is concerning that episodes of pancreatitis are likely to increase this risk for the children as well (over their lifetimes).

Mountain Laurel (?) -Pine Mountain Trail

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