What is Pancreatic Divisum?

 In Other Conditions

What is a pancreatic divisum and why does it happen?

A pancreatic divisum the most common congenital (at birth) pancreatic abnormality, affecting approximately 5%-10% of the population. When the pancreas is forming there are two ducts, typically these two ducts will fuse together during the developmental process and become one duct. However, if this fusion does not occur it is called a pancreatic divisum.

What are possible symptoms?

  1. Over 95% of people with a pancreatic divisum will not experience symptoms, and it will be discovered incidentally during imaging diagnostics for something else.
  2. In rare cases someone may experience abdominal pain.

Who is likely to develop it?

Anyone can develop a pancreatic divisum in utero.

Potential complications?

Complications are very rare. However, some people may develop abdominal pain and there are associations with pancreatitis.

What are possible treatments?

  1. No evaluation or treatment is need for people without symptoms, history of pancreatitis, or additional abnormalities of the pancreas.
  2. Symptomatic people may require medication, diet changes, or surgery.

Where can I get more information?

For additional information, please seek further guidance from your primary care provider or Gastroenterology & Hepatology specialist.


Fogel, E. L., & Sherman, S. (2017). Treatment of pancreas divisum. In D. C. Whitcomb & S. Grover (Eds.), UptoDate.

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