The clinic is a multidisciplinary clinic intended
to serve patients who have issues with their bile ducts, biliary disorders and non-malignant
conditions of their pancreas. Specifically, patients who have chronic abdominal
pain or actute or chronic pancreatitis. If you can imagine walking around every day
with chronic, severe debilitating pain with repeated visits to your physician or the emergency
room and hospitalizations and constantly being told we can’t find anything wrong with you.
This is a chronic disorder. By the time they reach our clinic, they’ve
had multiple physician visits, diagnostic tests, interventions, without relief. This clinic will provide those patients a
central place and multiple disciplines, fantastic physicians from endocrinology, gastroenterology
and surgery and a dedicated nurse coordinator to always contact and always have options
available. This is the first clinic in the region to
be able to serve this patient population. These patients are managed by their primary
care physicians maybe gastroenterologists and a lot of times, primarily by emergency
room physicians who don’t follow these patient long term and who maybe don’t specialize in
the pancreas. This is a place where we can offer endoscopic
therapies, medically manage these patients. It’s exciting to be able to offer total pancreatectomy
and auto-islet cell transplant as an option for patient with chronic pancreatitis. Total pancreatectomy with auto-islet cell
transplant is intended for patients who have the chronic severe debilitating pain.
The procedure involves removing the entire pancreas and harvesting the islet cells which
produce insulin and injecting them into the liver where they’ll set up and hopefully begin
producing insulin and avoid diabetes. The goal of the clinic is really to just serve
this patient population and give them one central place they can call and have multiple
people and disciplines and therapies to offer. Previous to coming to this clinic they feel
like they’re not being heard. Not necessarily mis-managed, but just not getting answers
while they continue to have issues that affect their daily lives.
They can’t go to school, they’re missing work, sometimes they’re on disability.
Sometimes daily interaction with their families becomes too much. So a lot of them are dependent
on narcotics. They’re really just stretched thin and at
the end of their rope When they contact us. So to give them hope is really exciting.