Exocrine pancreatic insufficiency (EPI) is frequent in patients with chronic pancreatitis (CP). This 1-year, prospective, multicenter, observational, disease management study aimed to assess symptom improvement and quality of life in patients with CP with EPI who were receiving pancreatic enzyme replacement.
Patients with CP and chronic EPI were either assigned to cohort 1 that consisted of patients already taking pancreatin (Kreon; Abbott Arzneimittel GmbH, Hannover, Germany) or cohort 2 that consisted of patients with newly diagnosed EPI without prior pancreatic enzyme treatment. Symptoms were documented, and quality of life was assessed using the gastrointestinal quality of life index (GIQLI) at baseline, 6 months, and 1 year.
A total of 294 patients were evaluated (cohort 1, n = 206; cohort 2, n = 88). The proportion of patients experiencing gastrointestinal symptoms and recurrent pain after 1 year was significantly reduced in both cohorts (P < 0.001). The alleviation of symptoms was reflected in GIQLI score improvements at 1 year in both cohorts (P < 0.001), independent of CP severity and etiology. Improvements in GIQLI score were more pronounced in cohort 2 (P < 0.001).
Pancreatin demonstrated symptom relief and improvement in quality of life in patients with CP-related EPI in this disease management study.