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What are pancreatic cysts?

Related Topics: Cyst, Pancreas

Answers From Experts & Organizations (1)

5,093 Answers
269,537 Helpful Votes

Pancreatic cysts are collections (pools) of fluid within the head, body, or tail of the pancreas. Some pancreatic cysts are true cysts, that is, they are lined by a special layer of cells that are responsible for secreting fluid into the cysts. Other cysts are pseudocysts and do not contain specialized lining cells.

Pancreatic cysts can range from several millimeters to several centimeters in size. Many pancreatic cysts are benign and produce no symptoms, but some cysts are cancerous or precancerous. (Precancerous cysts are benign cysts that have the potential to become cancerous.)

Different types of cysts contain different types of fluids. For example, pseudocysts that form after an attack of acute pancreatitis contain digestive enzymes such as amylase in high concentrations. Mucinous cysts contain mucus (a proteinaceous liquid produced by the mucinous cells that form the inside lining of the cyst).

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Archived: March 20, 2014

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Read the Original Article: Pancreatic Cysts