Pancreaticobiliary disorders and diseases of the pancreas and biliary tract (bile ducts) can be very complex. The Pancreaticobiliary Program at Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin is a nationally recognized referral source for people with pancreaticobiliary diseases, and was the first program of its kind in the Midwest devoted to these disorders.
Pancreaticobiliary Disease Treatment
Gallbladder Disease — the gallbladder is a sac (located near the liver) that stores bile produced in the liver. Conditions that slow or obstruct the flow of bile out of the gallbladder result in gallbladder disease, such as:
- Gallstones (cholelithiasis)
- Inflammation of the gallbladder (cholecystitis)
Pancreas Disease — the pancreas produces and releases insulin and glucagon into the bloodstream to keep blood sugar levels within a normal range. The pancreas also produces enzymes to aid in the digestion of fats, proteins and carbohydrates in the intestine. Disease of the pancreas include:
- Pancreatitis (acute and chronic inflammation of the pancreas)
- Solid tumors (malignant and non-malignant)
- Cystic tumors (may be benign, pre-malignant or malignant)
- Pseudocysts (a fluid collection of pancreatic enzymes)
- Strictures (blockages)
Bile Duct Disease — bile ducts carry bile from the liver to the intestine, where it aids in the digestion of food. Bile duct diseases include:
- Stones (choledocholithiasis)
- Strictures (narrowing of a duct that prevents bile from draining)
- Tumors (malignant and non-malignant)
- Cholangitis, an infection of the bile ducts
Pancreaticobiliary Treatment Team
The multidisciplinary team of specialists in diseases of the pancreas and bile ducts includes therapeutic pancreaticobiliary endoscopists, gastroenterologists, radiologists, pancreaticobiliary and laparoscopic surgeons, medical oncologists, radiation oncologists and pathologists.
Team members are experienced in providing the latest technologies and procedures for treating patients, often using innovative new techniques, instruments and research protocols, especially for those patients in whom standard treatments have failed. In patient care conferences, these specialists combine their knowledge to offer patients the most appropriate treatment plan.
- Quick evaluation of patients
- On-site treatments ranging from basic to cutting-edge
- Opportunities to enroll in the latest research studies
- Patient education
Novel and innovative new techniques, instrumentation, and research protocols are utilized to treat difficult disorders, such as chronic pancreatitis, cancer of the pancreas or bile duct and post-operative strictures or stones. Outcomes research is used to determine the most effective, least invasive and cost-efficient care for these patients.