July 1, 2022 – Travis Buck, drummer for rock band Blink-182, was hospitalized in Los Angeles this week with pancreatitis.
Buck, 46, the husband of celebrity influencer Kourtney Kardashian, recently underwent a colonoscopy to check for colon cancer. Experts weighed the possibility of a link between his colonoscopy and pancreatitis.
“It’s possible, but rare,” said Timothy B. Gardner, MD, director of pancreatic disease at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in Lebanon, New Hampshire.
“It’s very rare,” agrees Vladimir M Kushnir, MD. “Colonoscopy is a very safe and life-saving procedure.”
The serious complication rate for colonoscopy is well below 1 in 1,000, he said.
Only five cases of post-colonoscopy pancreatitis have been reported in the medical literature, usually after very difficult surgery, Kushnir said. “If I was having a colonoscopy or my family was having a colonoscopy, I would never have to worry about that,” said Kushner, director of bariatric endoscopy at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis.
“I’ve done thousands of colonoscopies, and I’ve never had a patient develop pancreatitis,” Gardner said.
One thing is unclear: how much time passed between Buck’s colonoscopy and pancreatitis. Typically, the pancreas must become inflamed within 24 to 48 hours to be relevant, Gardner said.
more common reasons
The pancreas is a large digestive gland located behind the stomach. It can become inflamed for a variety of reasons, but is most commonly associated with gallstone disease or excessive alcohol consumption.
When the pancreas becomes inflamed, it can cause abdominal pain and nausea. “In most cases, it gets better after a few days,” Kushner said. “But in rare cases, patients can develop severe inflammation, and it can be quite severe. Pancreatitis is actually one of the most common gastrointestinal conditions that require hospitalization.”
Gardner agrees that most people with pancreatitis recover within a few days. He also noted that some drugs and pancreatic cancer can also cause pancreatitis.
A portion of the colon, called the splenic flexure, is located in the upper left part of the abdomen, immediately adjacent to the tail of the pancreas. “So they’re next to each other,” Gardner said.
“So it’s conceivable that if we did a colonoscopy, the pressure could cause mechanical contact with that part of the pancreas,” he said. But again, it’s very rare.
According to a report in peopleBuck was admitted to Cedars-Sinai Hospital on Tuesday with cramps, extreme stomach pain and difficulty walking.