Helping Kids and Teens to Understand and Prepare for Pancreatic Surgery
*Please note: This slide set represents a visual interpretation and is not intended to provide, nor substitute as, medical and/or clinical advice.
Oftentimes when your pancreas has been sick for a long time, along with you having severe belly pain that prevents you from doing normal activities with your friends and family, your doctor may decide that you need to have "pancreatic surgery".
Pancreatic surgery can involve doctors removing a part…
…or all of your pancreas from of your body.
After your surgery it will take time to get better.
But the good news is that most people will start to feel much better over time.
For pancreatic surgery you will need to go to the hospital and may have to stay there for a few days or longer.
All throughout your stay, there will be doctors, nurses and caregivers who will take excellent care of you.
And your family will be with you before and after the surgery.
Before your surgery, you must not have any food or drink because it's best that you have an empty stomach when you get a special kind of medicine known as "anesthesia".
Your doctor will let you know when you can have something to eat or drink.
Once you've changed clothes, a nurse will help you prepare for your surgery and ask you and your family some questions.
Soon it will be time to go to the operating room. This is the room where your surgery will take place.
Your doctors will give you medications to make you sleep through the surgery.
When you wake up, your surgery will be over and your family will be nearby in a recovery room. Your doctor will give you pain medicine to make you as comfortable as possible.
During your recovery you might need to take some special medicine. Just remember that over time you will feel much better than before you had the surgery and that any discomfort you do feel, will eventually go away.
If your pancreas is removed, then it no longer makes insulin and doctors need to do a special surgery procedure called "islet autotransplantation".
After islet autotransplantation your body can still make insulin, however it may take time for this to happen. In about half of the patients who get this, they will need insulin therapy for a period of time or sometimes for their lifetime.
Your doctor will also tell you what special diet to follow after the surgery and what to eat, drink, and avoid.
Your doctor will tell you when you are well enough to go home.
Just remember, having pancreatic surgery can help you begin to feel better sooner and go back to enjoying everyday activities.
See your doctor soon after your surgery to get a check-up.