For most people, the prognosis is good. An acute bout of pancreatitis will clear up with treatment and may never recur. 

Chronic pancreatitis, on the other hand, can have some severe consequences. It will likely require long-term treatment and management. At some point, they may need a procedure that drains fluid from the organ, to have damaged areas of the pancreas removed, or to have surgery to unblock a bile duct. Chronic cases also increase the risk of life-threatening illnesses, such as cancer or diabetes. 


Can pancreatitis lead to death?

There is always that possibility, especially if the condition is chronic. About four percent of people with chronic pancreatitis develop cancer. 

The risk is much higher for the development of diabetes. About 80 percent of diagnosed type 3c diabetes mellitus (pancreatogenic diabetes) have chronic pancreatitis. From five to ten percent of all diabetes patients in Western populations have chronic pancreatitis. 

Can pancreatitis be cured?

For most people, pancreatitis is a curable condition. Making lifestyle changes such as stopping drinking or losing weight may prevent a recurrence. They may also get treatment for an underlying condition that triggered the inflammation, such as gallstones. 

Which pancreatitis has the best prognosis?

Chronic pancreatitis offers the highest risk of complications, such as cancer or diabetes. 

Disclaimer: this article does not constitute or replace medical advice. If you have an emergency or a serious medical question, please contact a medical professional or call 911 immediately. To see our full medical disclaimer, visit our Terms of Use page.

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