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Childhood Diseases

Question
Posted by: | 2017/12/11

Q.

Child in coma from pancreatic surgery?

A family friend's child (6 years old) underwent a pancreatic surgery, from my understanding the doctors wanted to operate on the appendix but after more tests found that they had to operate on the pancreas. At the end of the surgery she went comatose, and has been in a coma since the end of november. The doctors are extremely uncooperative, refusing to talk about her initial diagnosis or the surgery, and the parents of the comatose child are very clueless when it comes to medicine, so they don't know much of what's going on. This is a very frustrating scenario, as i know the types of different comas and always though that people don't just randomly fall into a coma during surgery, and i wanted to know if it was actually possible, or if there has been some error on the surgeon's part, or any other possible reason of a child falling in coma during surgery. If it happens, is there a possibility of her waking up and how serious can these types of comas be? The only thing i could get out of the doctor is that her coma is in stage 3. Thank you for your time.

Expert's Reply

A.

Paediatrician
- 2017/12/13

The most likely cause of your friend's child's illness is a serious inflammation of the pancreas called pancreatitis. Read up about 'pancreatitis in children' on Google. In many cases cysts may form in the pancreas during the early stage of  pancreatitis. Abdominal pain is usually quite severe and can be mistaken for appendicitis. Depending on the severity of the inflammation in the pancreas, several enzymes secreted by the pancreas can be affected including insulin. Pancreas disease may be very serious in some children and carries a risk of severe chronic problems with the pancreas or even death.

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