What is Pancreatic Insufficiency?

What is Pancreatic Insufficiency?

Pancreatic Insufficiency, also known as exocrine pancreatic insufficiency or EPI, is issues with digestion including the inability to digest food. With EPI, the enzymes responsible for digesting food aren’t created in enough numbers from the pancreas. This lack of enzymes results in the symptoms many experience from EPI, including weight loss, steatorrhea, diarrhea, as well as stomach issues like gas. With any of these symptoms in combination, one should go to the doctor to request stool testing or pancreatic enzyme replacement therapy. Prescriptions can support your body along with vitamins, in restoring and fighting the deficiencies one might suffer under the conditions.

One of the most common recommendations to fight EPI is to avoid the consumption of alcohol, which further weakens the deficient enzymes and weakens the digestive process. The onset itself can be accredited to things like an inflamed pancreas, cystic fibrosis, or surgeries in the digestive areas. Essentially, anything that would weaken or damage the pancreas, which creates the necessary digestive enzymes, can end in EPI. This condition can be worsened by changes to one's eating habits. EPI can be detected through a direct pancreatic function test, a fecal fat test, and a fecal elastase test. Maldigestion is not something to take lightly as it can prevent the body from absorbing key nutrients, as well as cause many unpleasant symptoms.