Eating and Drinking at Sea Kills You: Talking about Acute Pancreatitis

Recently, there have been news reports, A 24-year-old boy bought a high-end buffet at half price. In order to [eat back to the original], I stuffed a lot of solid dishes and couldn’t eat them before I left. As a result, shortly after returning home, I suffered from abdominal distension, vomiting and severe abdominal pain, and was sent to the hospital-diagnosed as acute pancreatitis and almost lost my life. Here I have to talk about this acute and severe disease that makes the hospital especially persistent during the holidays.

Ferocious Death

Acute pancreatitis is a very dangerous disease, not only causing severe pain. Mild acute pancreatitis mainly damages the pancreas and adjacent parts, while severe acute pancreatitis is accompanied by persistent multiple organ failure and severe infection. Once this happens, the mortality rate of patients exceeds 30%.

Why is the inflammation of this small organ in the stomach so fierce?

The pancreas is located deep in the abdominal cavity, buried deep behind the stomach, duodenum and peritoneum. Although it is small and hidden deep, it plays one of the most important roles in the process of food digestion.

The pancreas secretes digestive enzymes targeting sugar, fat and protein by forming pancreatic juice.

Most of these enzymes are inactivated when they are first secreted, After entering the intestinal tract, it is activated and starts to play a role. Once for some reason, pancreatin is activated in advance, or leaks to the outside of the pancreas or catheter, it is bound to have strong corrosiveness to various organs in the abdominal cavity, and necrosis is everywhere. Therefore, the organs in the abdominal cavity are widely damaged, accompanied by severe abdominal pain, vomiting, abdominal distension and other symptoms.

In addition, when severe acute pancreatitis occurs, the systemic inflammatory reaction is activated, and the entire circulatory system and organs far away from the pancreas will also be damaged, resulting in obstacles, high fever, shock, hemorrhage and necrosis, renal failure, etc.

So far, the mechanism leading to acute pancreatitis has not been clearly studied, but medical research has also found some factors closely related to pancreatitis in lifestyle, such as [binge drinking], [gallstones], etc.

Big things happen when you eat and drink at sea.

Every time around the Spring Festival, the hospital receives a special number of patients with acute pancreatitis, sometimes more than usual busier than the holidays. You should be able to guess that this must be the disaster caused by eating and drinking too much and overeating during the Spring Festival.

Alcohol stimulation can sensitize pancreatic cells, enhance the role of their regulatory factors, metabolize acetaldehyde substances, produce toxicity to the pancreas, and eventually increase the possibility of premature activation of pancreatin in the pancreas.

In addition, alcohol stimulation will also increase the pressure of pancreatic duct through various ways.

Under this background, sudden heavy drinking and eating will lead to a large amount of secretion of pancreatic juice. The huge pressure will rupture acini in the pancreas. At the same time, it will also induce pancreatin to be activated. The first activated pancreatin will also activate other pancreatin, just like cigarette butts falling on gunpowder powder, which is out of control.

The detailed mechanism of pancreatitis caused by alcohol consumption has not been clarified, but it is indeed a major cause of pancreatitis. One third of acute pancreatitis in the United States is caused by alcohol consumption. Therefore, reducing alcohol consumption is an important way to prevent pancreatitis.

The direct relationship between gluttony and pancreatitis has not been clearly studied, and there is not enough research to support gluttony as the cause of acute pancreatitis alone. However, it has also been found that even if people do not drink alcohol, patients who gluttony due to eating behavior disorders are more likely to develop pancreatitis.

Acute Pancreatitis Caused by Small Gallstones

Gallstone is a very common disease, a few people have one, the most common symptom is the stone stuck in the bile duct or incision, causing abdominal colic. However, many people suffering from gallstones are too big to fall out of the gallbladder, and even the symptoms of stomachache have not appeared all their lives. Only after physical examination did B-ultrasound find out.

Therefore, many people regard gallstones as minor diseases and are unwilling to take care of them. However, patients receiving treatment in hospitals often listen to some treatment methods such as [lithotripsy].

In fact, about 40% of acute pancreatitis is caused by gallstones.

Pancreas is an organ directly communicating with gallbladder. Biliary tract and pancreatic duct lead to intestinal tract through a common duct. Therefore, once gallstones fall into biliary tract, they may fall into pancreatic duct and cause obstruction. Once obstruction occurs, the pressure in pancreatic duct rises sharply and acinar rupture will cause acute pancreatitis.

How to prevent biliary acute pancreatitis?

Pancreatitis occurs in 3-7% of gallstone patients, which is already quite high for common diseases. So how to prevent it?

First of all, a regular and balanced diet is an important way to prevent gallstones.

Not eating breakfast, unreasonable low-fat diet and dieting to lose weight are all lifestyles that easily cause gallstones. It is very important to prevent pancreatitis to prevent the occurrence of gallstones.

Secondly, regular physical examination, found gallstones should consult a doctor.

At present, cholecystectomy is the most effective and safe way for gallstones. Many treatment methods known as “painless lithotripsy” [bile preservation lithotripsy] will turn large stones into small stones and lithotripsy, making stones easier to fall into biliary tract and pancreatic duct, which may lead to acute pancreatitis. Therefore, we should not only see the benefits of such “conservative treatment”.

In addition, gluttony is unhealthy.

For people with gallstones, after eating a large amount of greasy food, the gallbladder will contract strongly under the action of cholecystokinin, which may also allow stones to enter the bile duct. In addition to causing common biliary colic, it is also possible to induce acute pancreatitis.

Therefore, acute pancreatitis is closely related to drinking and gallstones, and may also be induced by gluttony. In addition, hyperlipidemia is also an important risk factor for acute pancreatitis. Controlling blood lipid and regular examination are also very important.


Returning to the news about the buffet guy at the beginning of the article. We can’t get more detailed information from the short news. However, acute pancreatitis is a dangerous disease after all. It is the most real thing for ordinary people to adopt a healthy lifestyle, avoid significant risk factors and reduce the risk of pancreatitis.