Learn how to use Mayo Clinic Connect
Request an Appointment
So my endocrinologist advised me that I should go see a gastroenterologist about so issues with my pancreas
I'm sure you are concerned about any problem with your pancreas. In order to know what other members might be able to help you, could you provide a bit more information? For example, was your doctor's concern about your pancreas related to a blood test, any pain you are having, or the results of a CT scan?
I am new to this group. For the last six months I have had orange oily floating diarrhea, frequently. I have lost 20 lbs. Sadly, my doctor is close to retiring and he doesn't bother too much with this. I have gone to ER of various hospitals, and had just had colonoscopy, endoscopy, CT scan, all of which were normal. Ixo have been looking after my husband who has end-stage Parkinson's Disease at home, until recently, and it has been very stressful. I think I have Exocrine Pancreatic Insufficiency, i.e., lack of sufficient enzymes secreted by pancreas, but no doctor has as yet diagnosed me with this. Many doctors ask me if I drink heavily every day (No) and want to know when I stopped smoking (never ever smoked),. I am wondering what are other causes of insufficient digestive enzymes. I wonder if it can be caused by stress. actually, I have been caring for my husband for the last 11 years and have been neglecting my own health, e.g., my diet. Can stress or neglecting diet cause insufficient digestive enzyme? does anyone know this?
Jump to this post
I don't know about your issues, but I am convinced my low blood sugar was due to terrible stress in my married life at a young age, less than 45. I was eating a healthy diet with a huge garden and meat we raised on the farm. When I changed my diet and took on a different lifestyle, the problem went away. But I am also convinced my heavy duty baking sweets to feed a big family also contributed to my eventual diabetes diagnosis a year after my husband died. I believe type 2 diabetes can be prevented as we learn more about a healthy lifestyle. My husband did not control his heavy eating, his diabetes, his drinking, his obesity, and his cancer treatment. I did, however. Dorisena
Thank you Dorisena. I am trying to take more time for myself to prepare meals and I am tracking everything I eat. But perhaps I am doing this quite late in the game. It is so hard when you see your husband dying day-by-day. I dont know how to reduce my stress, and that's why I think that it might be having an effect on my pancreas. Thanks for your input.
Kathy, I went through a period of watching my husband die, as well, so I understand where you are in life. He was not cooperative with the doctors and was hospitalized four times in a year. He had dementia and lied every day about everything. In the end he was paralyzed with a tumor growing up his spine, and thank God he was in the hospital. He died in Hospice but that was only about a month.
You need to lean on a buddy if you have one, because this is no job for one person alone. Know that I am on your team even at a distance. I poured my heart out to a stranger and had a sobbing spell, and then felt better for a while. We can be your support group on the web, so let it all out when you need to complain. Dorisena
I am so sorry to hear of your husband's difficult diagnosis and the difficult job you have as a caregiver. I can also understand your concern about the possible pancreas issue. I see that your current doctor is retiring. Have you considered getting a second opinion?
I would suggest seeing a Gastroenterologist. Have you seen a Gi specialist already? If not, that would be my next thought. If you can go to a multi-disciplinary health center (like Mayo Clinic or a university medical school) that would be a good choice. These health centers have ongoing research and doctors who are very well versed in treating hard-to-diagnose problems.
In any event, please take care of yourself! You are more than just your husband's caregiver.
I'm trying to learn as much as I can on these topics healthy packed lifestyle.i use to drink havent took a drink or smoked in two years. Trying to work on losing weight blood sugar numbers stay below 175 with me taking metformin
Hi @kathybowes, I was thinking about you and wondering how both you and your husband are doing. I would enjoy hearing from you when it is convenient.
Thank you for your concern. I am keeping extensive records of what I eat and my symptoms. I hope that it may provide some answers. I am having some tests but it is all going very slowly. I am just going along day to day. I realize I cannot visit my husband every day, because if I do go every day, then I end up having days when I am more or less confined to the bathroom all day long. My pancreas is not secreting the correct enzymes. So I think I can only visit him every other day. But I want to feed him myself as he cannot feed himself and can barely eat now, and is losing weight every day. I want to feed him because I can give him the high protein food items, and hope that at least he might maintain his weight and muscles, rather than continuing to waste away. It is a bit of a nightmare. How can I balance my needs against his? So far, all the tests I have had have come back negative, so I am now waiting for the gastro doctor to either order more tests or refer me elsewhere. There are shortages of doctors here, which I know because my daughter works at the hospital. So I just have to be patient. It is hard to combine weekly nose swabs, donning PPE every day, trying to find something to eat for myself, spending time with him, and all of the other things that are going on here. It's sort of like living in an altered reality, and wondering when the movie is going to end. haha. As I am asthmatic, I cannot travel anywhere at this time. So I just have to wait it out. Again, thanks for your concerns.
I want to compliment you, Kathy, on your good work and progress in your health. I am thinking that some doctors have not treated as many older people as we have now because people used to die at a younger age before they were diagnosed with anything. A neighbor died in his sleep at the age of 69 and I never knew him to have health problems. I am proud of you not drinking and smoking, as it is good that you are helping yourself so you can help others. I have been on several support groups on the web and have learned much and benefited from their experiences. It is so important for you to communicate with others, so keep doing that for your benefit.
Hi again @kathybowes,
I am so glad that you posted with an update. I understand, to some extent, how difficult it is to balance your needs as well as your husband's. You are doing a remarkable job in attempting all of that!
Your idea of keeping a journal of your diet and symptoms is a good one. It will certainly give you a step-up at your next doctor's appointment. It is wise that you are aware that after visits with your husband your symptoms increase. That probably shows you how important it is to take care of yourself.
Can you hire anyone, like a home-health-care-worker, to go and feed your husband on the days that you need to rest and take dare of yourself?
I have to have an ultrasound of my abdomen Wednesday
Create an account to connect with other patients and caregivers like you.Ask questions, get answers, and give and get support.Also follow blogs from Mayo Clinic experts.
Already have an account? Sign In