What are other types of analgesia that can be seen as potentially beneficial?
Ketamine, epidurals, and fentanyl are other types of analgesia that can be seen as potentially beneficial. Further studies are required specifically looking into the management of pain and acute pancreatitis, regarding the drug of choice, as there are limited, high quality studies available. Adequate nutrition is extremely important in acute pancreatitis. Oral nutrition is usually held until signs of acute pancreatitis are improving because oral diet will stimulate the pancreas to produce digestive enzymes and therefore worsen pancreatic tissue damage. However, the research is varied on which method of nutrition is more beneficial between enteral and total parenteral nutrition (TPN). Traditionally this has been achieved by total parental nutrition, but this can be expensive and carries a risk of sepsis and metabolic disturbances. Enteral feeding has been proven to be as safe and effective as parenteral nutrition and less expensive. Total parenteral nutrition (TPN) has been standard practice for providing nutrients to patients with severe acute pancreatitis for many years. However, recent research has suggested that enteral nutrition (EN) is not only feasible but safer and more effective. The beneficial effects of enteral feeding on mucosal integrity and the prevention of bacterial overgrowth may well explain the superiority of enteral feeding over TPN. Enteral feeding significantly reduces the risk of infections, lowers the need for surgical interventions, and reduces the length of hospital stays. Patients who are unable to tolerate enteral nutrition can be managed with total parenteral nutrition until such time that they can tolerate enteral feeding.