In the majority of diseases of the upper part of the abdomen, the symptoms are sufficiently well defined to permit a definite diagnosis. Probably the most prominent exception in this respect is the pancreas. At the same time, this organ is often involved in pathologic conditions of the surrounding viscera and even in diseases of more remote regions. The problem of pancreatitis is the old problem of abdominal surgery and, since a direct attack on the pancreas is as yet fraught with so much danger, a proper consideration of prepancreatic and peripancreatic disease, together with the etiologic factors as forerunners of acute and of chronic pancreatitis, becomes of vital importance. There is ample evidence1 to prove that cholecystitis and acute and chronic pancreatitis coexist in a large percentage of cases, but the cause of such coexistence is still obscure.
Where does the provocative agent come from? Among the many
RIENHOFF WF, PICKRELL KL. PANCREATITIS: AN ANATOMIC STUDY OF THE PANCREATIC AND EXTRAHEPATIC BILIARY SYSTEMS. Arch Surg. 1945;51(4):205–219. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1945.01230040214001
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