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What is recovery from the Whipple procedure like?

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Patients who undergo Whipple surgery are usually hospitalized for a week before returning home. Because recovery can be slow and painful, they usually need to take prescription or over-the-counter pain medications.

At first, patients can eat only small amounts of easily digestible food. They may need to take pancreatic enzymes -- either short-term or long-term -- to assist with digestion. Diarrhea is a common problem during the two or three months it usually takes for the rearranged digestive tract to fully recover.

From: Whipple Procedure WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

American Cancer Society: "Pancreatic Cancer Surgery."

Mayoclinic.org: "Pancreatic Cancer Treatment."

Pancreatica.org: "What Is the Surgical Treatment of Pancreatic Cancer?"

Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center: "The Whipple Procedure."

Pri-med Patient Education Center: "The Whipple Procedure."

University of Southern California Department of Surgery - Center for Pancreatic and Biliary Diseases.

Hirshberg Foundation for Pancreatic Cancer Research.

 

Reviewed by Jennifer Robinson on March 13, 2019

SOURCES:

American Cancer Society: "Pancreatic Cancer Surgery."

Mayoclinic.org: "Pancreatic Cancer Treatment."

Pancreatica.org: "What Is the Surgical Treatment of Pancreatic Cancer?"

Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center: "The Whipple Procedure."

Pri-med Patient Education Center: "The Whipple Procedure."

University of Southern California Department of Surgery - Center for Pancreatic and Biliary Diseases.

Hirshberg Foundation for Pancreatic Cancer Research.

 

Reviewed by Jennifer Robinson on March 13, 2019

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What complications may affect patients that have received the Whipple procedure?

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