Is pancreatitis a dangerous or lethal disease?
The pancreas is an organ behind the stomach and is responsible for producing enzymes that aid in the digestion of fats, proteins, and carbohydrates. When it becomes inflamed, the enzymes begin to digest the pancreas itself, causing severe pain and damaging the underlying tissue. This can become a life-threatening problem with severe consequences if not treated promptly.
Acute pancreatitis is more dangerous than chronic pancreatitis. The overall mortality of acute pancreatitis is up to 15%, reaching 30% when other organs are involved. Compared to that, the overall survival rate of chronic pancreatitis is 70% at ten years and 45% at 20 years. After 20 years of chronic pancreatitis, the risk of pancreatic cancer is 4%.