Acute Pancreatitis

Ray Ballinger, MD, PhD

Straub Clinic and Hospital

rballinger at


50 y/o female with 2 days of nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain.


CT abdomen

Publication Date: 13 February 2004
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History and Images

50 y/o female with 2 days of nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain. Admits to drinking 2-3 ounces of alcohol per day. Elevated lab values included Amylase = 434, Lipase = 1849, MCV = 108, Alk Phos = 149.

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An edematous pancreas is seen on the ultrasound and contrast enhanced CT images along with fatty infiltration of the liver. The CT scan also shows stranding and a small amount of fluid surrounding the pancreas and between the liver and abdominal wall. Small bilateral pleural effusions were present as well.


Acute Pancreatitis with fatty infiltration of the liver


This patient presents with typical clinical and laboratory findings of acute pancreatitis. Her serum glucose and triglyceride levels were also elevated. Women develop complications from alcohol consumption at lower levels then men for a combination of reasons including smaller body weight and hormonal factors. Prolonged use of as little as 1-2 alcoholic drinks per day in women may result in health complications including alcoholic hepatitis, fatty liver and pancreatitis. Ascities, pleural effusions (especially on the left), pseudocysts and necrosis are amoung the complications of acute pancreatitis.