Treating Pancreatic Disease
Pancreatic surgery requires highly advanced expertise. That’s why choosing a hospital for pancreatic disease treatment could be the most important decision you’ll ever make. Each year, hundreds of patients with pancreatic
diseases seek treatment with the help of Beaumont experts.
Our pancreatic disease treatment procedures include:
Whipple Treatment for the Pancreas
For the many cancers or suspicious cysts that occur in the head of the pancreas, complete removal usually requires the Whipple procedure, which includes taking out that portion of the pancreas, the duodenum (8-10 inches of small bowel), the lower part
of the bile duct and gallbladder, nearby lymph glands and, at times, a portion of the stomach. This extensive pancreatic surgery is required to ensure complete removal of a tumor since these organs share a common blood supply. Once the
tumor is removed, new connections are made to the remaining pancreas, bile duct and stomach to restore normal digestive function. Contrary to common belief, an individual can live without a pancreas; therefore, complete removal (total pancreatectomy)
can be performed when necessary. In these patients, insulin treatment and oral pancreatic enzyme replacements are used to replace the function of the removed pancreas.
Many studies have shown the benefit of undergoing the Whipple procedure or other complex pancreatic treatments at high volume centers like Beaumont, which has teams dedicated to the care of pancreatic disease.
Minimally invasive laparoscopic pancreatectomy
Advances in minimally invasive surgery have allowed Beaumont surgeons to provide patients with laparoscopic alternatives for pancreatic surgery. For many patients, distal pancreatectomy (removal of the body and tail of the pancreas, with or without the
spleen) can be performed through a series of small incisions with a camera. In some cases, the laparoscopic pancreatic treatment will be combined with standard surgery to use smaller incisions and allow faster recovery. Your surgeon will discuss the
appropriate and safe options for your condition.