To support the free and open dissemination of research findings and information on alcoholism and alcohol-related problems. To encourage open access to peer-reviewed articles free for all to view.

For full versions of posted research articles readers are encouraged to email requests for "electronic reprints" (text file, PDF files, FAX copies) to the corresponding or lead author, who is highlighted in the posting.


Sunday, March 31, 2013

Abstinence after First Acute Alcohol-Associated Pancreatitis Protects Against Recurrent Pancreatitis and Minimizes the Risk of Pancreatic Dysfunction

To determine the recurrence of pancreatitis and subsequent pancreatic function in patients who stop drinking after the first episode of alcohol-associated pancreatitis.

Of a total of 118 patients suffering from their first alcohol-associated pancreatitis, 18 (all men, age median 47 (27–71) years) met the inclusion criterion for abstinence during follow-up. Recurrent attacks of acute pancreatitis were studied. Smoking, body mass index and laboratory tests detecting heavy consumption of alcohol were recorded. Blood and faecal tests were studied to assess endocrine and exocrine pancreatic function.

During a mean follow-up time of 5.15 (1.83–9.13) years and a total of 92.7 patient-years, there were no recurrent attacks of acute pancreatitis among the 18 abstainers. Two patients had diabetes prior to and one was diagnosed immediately after the first episode of acute pancreatitis. One patient had impaired glucose metabolism at 2 years. Two patients had low insulin secretion in glucagon-C-peptide test, one at 4 years and the other at 5 years. Only one patient (6%) maintained low elastase-1 activity during the abstinence follow-up. Of the 100 non-abstainers, 34% had at least one recurrence during the follow-up.                    

Regardless of the mediator mechanisms of acute alcoholic pancreatitis, abstinence after the first episode protects against recurrent attacks. Pancreatic dysfunction is also rare among abstinent patients.

Read Full Abstract

Request Reprint E-Mail: