Defect in assimilation following combined radiation and chemotherapy in patients with locally unresectable pancreatic carcinoma

Jamie S. Barkin, Martin H. Kalser, Sharon Thomsen, Dorothy Redlhammer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

The relative contributions of high-dose irradiation and/or chemotherapy to the nutritional problems of patients with inoperable pancreatic carcinoma were evaluated by study of pancreatic exocrine function and jejunal function and morphologic findings in ten patients before and after treatment. Nutrient assimilation studies included determination of serum carotene levels, D-xylose absorption and fat absorption. Crosby capsule biopsy specimens of jejunal mucosa were evaluated with light microscopy. Fat assimilation was the only parameter of nutritional function to significantly worsen after therapy. Low serum carotene levels present in the patients before therapy remained low but did not significantly change after treatment. D-xylose absorption and the morphologic structure of the jejunal mucosa were normal before and after treatment. These findings support the previous observations that the nutritional problems of the patient with inoperable pancreatic carcinoma are due to pancreatic insufficiency and that high dose irradiation and chemotherapy can exacerbate the pancreatic insufficiency but do not produce jejunal dysfunction. Therefore, it is suggested that pancreatic exocrine replacement therapy may improve the nutritional status of these patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2189-2192
Number of pages4
JournalCancer
Volume50
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 15 1982

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

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