Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Rare Surgery Performed To Remove Pancreas, Prevent Diabetes

Date:
April 24, 2005
Source:
University Of Alabama At Birmingham
Summary:
In a 12-hour, dual-stage surgery known to be performed at only two other centers in the U.S., doctors at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) on Tuesday returned a patient's own insulin-producing cells to him after surgically removing his pancreas to eliminate constant, severe pain from chronic pancreatitis.

BIRMINGHAM, AL — In a 12-hour, dual-stage surgery known to be performed at only two other centers in the U.S., doctors at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) on Tuesday returned a patient's own insulin-producing cells to him after surgically removing his pancreas to eliminate constant, severe pain from chronic pancreatitis.

The patient, Leonard Stewart, 47, of Panama City, Fla., remained anesthetized in the operating room at UAB Hospital through removal of his entire pancreas and the hours-long wait for the pancreatic islet cells to be processed in a specialized UAB laboratory. The cells were then returned to the operating room and infused into the patient's liver, where they have begun to produce insulin.

Few hospitals have the technologically sophisticated facilities necessary to isolate and purify the pancreatic islet cells either from a cadaver donor for transplantation or, as in this case, for infusion back into the same patient.

The removal of the entire pancreas is an accepted, although radical last-resort, surgery to give relief from pain, usually from inflammation of pancreatitis. In the past, such surgery might eliminate the pain but would leave the patient with severe, poorly-controlled diabetes, since the insulin-producing islets of Langerhans would necessarily be discarded along with the rest of the organ. Patients without functioning islet cells have to take insulin for life. Retrieving and relocating the natural insulin-producing cells from the pancreas saves patients from the complications of severe, poorly-controlled diabetes. Loss of the other major function of the pancreas, production of digestive enzymes, is dealt with by taking the enzymes as a dietary supplement.

Leading the complex operation were Drs. Selwyn M. Vickers, Devin E. Eckhoff and Juan L. Contreras. Vickers, who removed the pancreas, directs a clinic for the management of chronic pancreatitis, is chief of gastrointestinal surgery and co-director of the UAB Pancreaticobiliary Center. Eckhoff is director of the division of transplantation, and directs the University's islet cell transplant program, which uses pancreatic cells from brain-dead patients to cure insulin-dependent diabetics. Contreras is co-director of the islet transplant program. The patient was in intensive care at UAB Hospital for two days following the surgery, and will be in the hospital until sometime next week, doctors said.

Stewart's chronic pancreatitis developed four years ago as the result of a congenitally malformed pancreatic duct that closed down following removal of his gallbladder at a Louisiana hospital. Three prior operations and several procedures to place stents in the pancreatic duct failed to provide relief. The pain of chronic pancreatitis is known to be constant and extremely debilitating. Facing a life of suffering from the condition, Stewart chose the alternative of total removal of the pancreas and of autologous islet cell transplantation.

The procedure has been done previously; the first case was 16 years ago at the University of Minnesota, and the patient still survives. Only a few other cases were attempted, and results were not uniformly good, so the procedure fell out of favor until recently, when new advances in cadaveric islet cell transplantation made outcomes more favorable.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University Of Alabama At Birmingham. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University Of Alabama At Birmingham. "Rare Surgery Performed To Remove Pancreas, Prevent Diabetes." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 24 April 2005. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/04/050423190510.htm>.
University Of Alabama At Birmingham. (2005, April 24). Rare Surgery Performed To Remove Pancreas, Prevent Diabetes. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 19, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/04/050423190510.htm
University Of Alabama At Birmingham. "Rare Surgery Performed To Remove Pancreas, Prevent Diabetes." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/04/050423190510.htm (accessed September 19, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, September 19, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Could Grief Affect The Immune Systems Of Senior Citizens?

Could Grief Affect The Immune Systems Of Senior Citizens?

Newsy (Sep. 19, 2014) The study found elderly people are much more likely to become susceptible to infection than younger adults going though a similar situation. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Jury Delivers Verdict in Salmonella Trial

Jury Delivers Verdict in Salmonella Trial

AP (Sep. 19, 2014) A federal jury has convicted three people in connection with an outbreak of salmonella poisoning five years ago that sickened hundreds of people and was linked to a number of deaths. (Sept. 19) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
How The 'Angelina Jolie Effect' Increased Cancer Screenings

How The 'Angelina Jolie Effect' Increased Cancer Screenings

Newsy (Sep. 19, 2014) Angelina's Jolie's decision to undergo a preventative mastectomy in 2013 inspired many women to seek early screenings for the disease. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Cost of Ebola

The Cost of Ebola

Reuters - Business Video Online (Sep. 18, 2014) As Sierra Leone prepares for a three-day "lockdown" in its latest bid to stem the spread of Ebola, Ciara Lee looks at the financial implications of fighting the largest ever outbreak of the disease. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins