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A 31-year-old member asked:

what can i expect from a whipple procedure?

4 doctor answers9 doctors weighed in
Dr. Barry Rosen
General Surgery 34 years experience
A cure (we hope): A whipple operation involves removal of a part of the pancreas and duodenum and then re-routing the stomach, bile, and pancreatic enzymes back into the intestine. All this re-wiring has risks that favor doing this operation only at "centers of excellence" with surgeons very proficient (volume matters). Even in the best of hands, convalescence may take weeks or longer w/complications.
Dr. Mark Hoepfner
General Surgery 39 years experience
Major surgery: Whipple surgery involves removal of a part of the pancreas, small intestine & bile duct with several new surgical connections performed. Best performed by a well experienced general surgeon who has done many of these procedures. Risks of bleeding, infection, poor healing, pancreas leak, diabetes, etc.
Dr. Mark Hoepfner
General Surgery 39 years experience
Major surgery: Whipple surgery involves removal of a part of the pancreas, small intestine & bile duct with several new surgical connections performed. Best performed by a well experienced general surgeon who has done many of these procedures. Risks of bleeding, infection, poor healing, pancreas leak, diabetes, etc.
Dr. Eric Whitman
Surgical Oncology 36 years experience
Major surgery : Whipple procedure involves removal of head of pancreas and surrounding intestine (duodenum) as well as the end of the bile duct. The remaining pancreas and the bile duct are reconnected to the intestines, and the intestines themselves are reconstructed as well. Expect to be in the hospital 7-10 days. Major complications are possible, even death.

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A 34-year-old member asked:

What happens during a whipple procedure? Why is it done?

5 doctor answers10 doctors weighed in
Dr. Pedro Hernandez
Geriatrics 40 years experience
Pancreatic surgery: Whipple procedure is to make secretions from the pancreas drain into the digestive tract by surgery. When there is disease in the pancreas ( tumors benign or malignant, strictures, stones etc. )or nearby structures that blocks the pancreatic ducts this fluid full of secretions like Insulin and glucagon and pancreatic enzymes to digest fat cannot come out should come out.
A member asked:

Is the pancreaticoduodenectomy a risky thing to do?

2 doctor answers5 doctors weighed in
Dr. Arthur Heller
Gastroenterology 43 years experience
Major surgery: "whipple procedure" is major reworking of the plumbing, generally done to treat tumors of head of pancreas, neighboring ampulla of vater (entryway of panc and bile duct into small bowel). This shold be done by a surgeon who does "a lot" of these, in a place where they do "a lot" of these- often a cancer referral center. Can be a lot of perioperative, postoperative complications, longterm problems.
A 41-year-old member asked:

Familiar with the whipple procedure pancreaticoduodenectomy?

3 doctor answers11 doctors weighed in
Dr. Steven Ginsberg
Hematology and Oncology 37 years experience
Yes: This procedure is most commonly done in an attempt to cure pancreatic cancer.
A 45-year-old member asked:

What are long term whipple procedure complications?

3 doctor answers9 doctors weighed in
Dr. Mark Hoepfner
General Surgery 39 years experience
Depends: It depends somewhat on why the surgery was performed. If the pancreas surgery was for cancer, the long term risks are cancer recurrence. If the surgery was for pain from chronic pancreatitis, the long term risk is pain recurrence. Other risks are diabetes, fatty food intolerance, nutritional or dietary changes.
A 35-year-old member asked:

What is life like after whipple procedure ?

5 doctor answers18 doctors weighed in
Dr. Christopher Oxner
Surgical Oncology 18 years experience
Eventually normal: Recovery is slow and can be even slower with complications. Patients who are not diabetic and have normal pancreatic functions maintain normal function postoperatively most of the time. Patients will initially have poor appeptite and lose weight but eventually return to eating a normal diet. Recovery can also be delayed if patients require chemo &/or radiation.
Dr. Cosme Manzarbeitia
General Surgery 39 years experience
Well put. However, whipple is frequently performed for malignancy, and recurrence is more common than not. So the above applies in general in the absence of tumor recurrence
Aug 9, 2012

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Last updated Feb 2, 2017

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