Treatment for Pancreatic Cysts

Updated July 19, 2017

Pancreatic cysts are pockets of fluid on or in your pancreas. They are usually not cancerous, may not cause symptoms, and their cause is usually unknown. Pancreatic pseudocysts are similar pockets of fluid, but contain liquid that leaks from a damaged pancreatic duct.


Symptoms of pancreatic cysts include nausea, vomiting, persistent stomach pain, possible back pack and a mass in the upper abdomen.


Treatment of pancreatic cysts will depend on whether the cyst causes symptoms. When there are not symptoms, a doctor may choose to not treat the cyst but monitor it for further development.


Pancreatic cysts which cause symptoms such as abdominal or back pain will require treatment. A physician will insert a long, thin needle into the cyst to drain it.


Pancreatic cysts may be treated with surgery to remove them when the cysts have grown too large and may potentially become cancerous.


Pseudocysts may go away without treatment. Those which remain will be monitored with CAT scans and if necessary, treated with surgery to drain the cyst.

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Serena Brown graduated from the University of South Alabama with a bachelor's degree in communication. She has more than 15 years of experience in newspaper, radio and television reporting. Brown has also authored educational, medical and fitness material.