Pancreatitis is inflammation of the pancreas. Some of the key functions of the pancreas include producing enzymes that help in digestion, controlling hormones associated with gut function and producing insulin and glucagon which govern glucose metabolism.
Amylase and Lipase are digestive enzymes that are normally secreted from the acinar cells in the pancreas into the duodenum. In pancreatitis amylase and lipase tend to be elevated.
A Liver Function Tests (LFT) is commonly ordered by physicians to determine the level of certain liver enzymes (proteins) in the blood and the patients overall liver function status. It is important that the liver is functioning properly as a damaged liver may lead to very serious health conditions. Liver enzymes may be imbalanced in certain types of pancreatitis.
Pancreatic Elastase is used to diagnose certain pancreas disorders related to not producing enough digestive enzymes and aid in diagnosis of the exocrine pancreatic function or insufficiency.
It can be used to assess patients with chronic pancreatitis, chronic inflammatory bowel disease and other situations involving exocrine pancreas dysfunction. The PE1 results are not affected by pancreatic enzyme replacement therapy therefore, patients are not required to stop supplementation prior to stool collection. The pancreatic elastase test allows the clinician to establish a prompt and reliable diagnosis with high degrees of sensitivity in suspected cases of pancreatic insufficiency.
- Bloating, pain (particularly upper abdominal pain) or nausea
- Loose or watery stools
- Oily or smelly stools
- Undigested food in the stool
- Food intolerances
- Gastroesophageal reflux symptoms