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Diagnosed with microscopic colotis. Take donntal. Had positive amylase test. Taking lexapro and klonipin. Suggest?

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Addiction Medicine Specialist
Practicing since : 2002
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I have been under enormous stress since the beginning of August which continues till today. My specific question which has to do with the pancreas or total endocrine glands is pain which runs from under my upper left shoulder blade around the front extending into the area of the pancreas and sigmoid colon...I'm 73 female have experienced this once before when in my mid thirties when I was under enormous stress...actually had a positive amylase test ....the gi doctor said I couldn't have pancreatitis because I didn't fit the profile!!! My stools have changed to lighter yellow today ...I do take something for anxiety, lexapro 15 milligrams a day and klonipin, 0,05 mgs ....1 1/2 tablet per day. I have been diagnosed with microscopic colotis in 2006 and take donntal 3 tabs per day and 1 entocort per day. The stressors are: my husband has had bladder cancer for 8 years, quite treatable though he may have to have his bladder removed. My daughter-in-law has hurthle cell thyroid cancer for 4 years and now in the past two weeks has been diagnosed with breast cancer. My only son is on his own because after 30 years of marriage is wife left him and my grandson, 29 has become a police officer in an inner city in Connecticut. All that being said I guess I am in remarkably good health...but my paternal grandparent either female or male died of pancreatic cancer , the other of bladder cancer. My maternal side is remarkably healthy.....I have no other known health problems at this time. thanks for any direction you may point me!!!
Posted Fri, 1 Nov 2013 in Women's Health
Answered by Dr. Preeti Parakh 1 hour later
Brief Answer:
Yes, stress can cause pancreatitis.

Detailed Answer:

Welcome to Healthcare Magic!

It may come as a surprise to you but you have correctly noticed that stress can affect the pancreas. Emotional stress may not only be responsible for an initial attack of pancreatitis but may also be responsible for exacerbations, relapses or chronicity of pancreatic disease. There is enough research to support this.

Stress also affects the functioning of other glands in the body. Stress leads to increased corticosteroid levels in the body which also can cause pancreatitis. Since you are taking Budesonide (Entocort), which is also a steroid, this medicine can also cause pancreatitis.

Pancreatitis usually is characterised by pain in abdomen which radiates to the back. Pale oily stools also support the diagnosis. Though the pain that you have described is not the kind typically seen in pancreatitis, if it is the same as that you had in the last episode of pancreatitis, then there is ahigh possiblity that you may be suffering from pancreatitis again. Please inform your doctor and get your blood tested for pancreatic enzymes like amylase and lipase.

Hope this helps you. Please feel free to ask if you need any clarifications.

Best wishes.

Dr Preeti Parakh
MD Psychiatry
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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