Role of Imaging in the Diagnosis of Chronic Pancreatitis and Differentiation from Carcinoma of Pancreas

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Chronic pancreatitis is a disease of continuing inflammation that persists even after cessation of the initial etiologic agent. This condition can be clinically silent or associated with significant morbidity because of intractable pain, steatorrhea, loss of exocrine and endocrine function, and other complications. Chronic pancreatitis is primarily treated medically. Radiological, surgical, and endoscopic intervention is required for those patients with intractable pain and complications associated with the disease. Imaging (CT, sonography, endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography, angiography) plays a significant role in diagnosis, in evaluating the anatomic and pathologic extent of disease and its complications, in excluding extrapancreatic causes of clinical manifestations, and in selecting among treatment alternatives.

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