*EMBARGOED All research presented at the 2018 ACG Annual Scientific Meeting and Postgraduate Course is strictly embargoed until Monday, October 8, 2018, at 8:00 am EDT.

Tarek Alansari, MD
Tarek Alansari, MD

P1799 Cannabis as an Overlooked Cause of Acute Pancreatitis: A Case Report and Literature Review

Author Insight from Tarek Alansari, MD, Metropolitan Hospital

What’s new here and important for clinicians?

According to Business Insider, as of June 2018 recreational marijuana is legal in nine states and medical marijuana is legal in 30 states. Recent surveys show that about 35 million Americans use marijuana monthly. Our case report along with a growing body of evidence in literature suggests that people who use cannabis recreationally or for medical use are at risk for developing acute pancreatitis, especially if they are younger than 35. Acute pancreatitis patients of undiagnosed etiology are exposed to the risk of recurrent episodes, chronic pancreatitis, and the complications that may follow. With the rising prevalence of cannabis use and its role as an overlooked cause of acute pancreatitis, health care providers should include cannabis in the differential diagnosis of acute pancreatitis cases with unknown etiology, particularly in patients under the age of 35.

What do patients need to know?

Given the increased availability of cannabis for recreational use and in managing chronic pain, patients should be aware of the association between cannabis and acute pancreatitis. Patients should be encouraged to be forthcoming and comfortable in discussing their medical history with their physicians including social habits, substance use and sexual habits, as this is paramount in relieving their symptoms, diagnosing the cause of their illness, and to avoid unnecessary diagnostic testing.

Read the Abstract

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Author Contact
Tarek Alansari, MD, Metropolitan Hospital

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