Korean J Pancreas Biliary Tract.  2017 Oct;22(4):158-164. 10.15279/kpba.2017.22.4.158.

Hypertriglyceridemia-Induced Acute Pancreatitis

  • 1Department of Internal Medicine, Kangwon National University Hospital, Kangwon National University School of Medicine, Chuncheon, Korea. youreon.park@gmail.com


Hypertriglyceridemia is a well-established cause of acute pancreatitis. The clinical presentation of hypertriglyceridemia-induced acute pancreatitis (HTG-AP) is generally not different from that of acute pancreatitis of any other etiology. There is concern about severity of HTG-AP, but data specifically comparing the severity of HTG-AP with that of acute pancreatitis caused by other etiologies are heterogeneous and scarce. Elevation of serum triglyceride levels to ≥ 1,000 mg/dL in a patient with acute pancreatitis provides strong support for HTG as the cause. Poorly controlled diabetes, obesity, alcoholism, pregnancy, and personal or family history of hyperlipidemia suggest HTG-AP. Initial supportive treatment of HTG-AP is not quite different from that of acute pancreatitis by other etiologies. In addition, insulin and plasmapheresis were effective in some studies. However, randomized controlled trials are needed to support these treatment methods. Lifestyle modifications and lipid lowering agents are required to prevent recurrences.


Hypertriglyceridemia; Pancreatitis; Insulin; Plasmapheresis
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