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Case Reports in Gastrointestinal Medicine
Volume 2018, Article ID 8714390, 4 pages
Case Report

Moderate Hypertriglyceridemia Causing Recurrent Pancreatitis: A Case Report and the Literature Review

1Department of Medicine and Gastroenterology, Interfaith Medical Center, 1545 Atlantic Avenue, Brooklyn, NY, USA
2Department of Medicine, Wayne State University/Detroit Medical Center, Detroit, MI, USA

Correspondence should be addressed to Vijay Gayam; moc.lacidemhtiafretni@mayagv

Received 31 March 2018; Revised 19 August 2018; Accepted 9 September 2018; Published 24 September 2018

Academic Editor: Antonio Macrì

Copyright © 2018 Vijay Gayam et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Recurrent acute pancreatitis secondary to hypertriglyceridemia (HTG) with levels below 1000 mg/dL has been rarely reported in the literature. HTG is the third most common cause of acute pancreatitis and has been established in the literature as a risk factor when levels are greater than 1000 mg/dL. A 43-year-old patient presented to the hospital with severe epigastric abdominal pain. Initial laboratory investigations were significant for a lipase level of 4143 U/L and a triglyceride level of 600 mg/dL. Computed tomography (CT) of the abdomen showed diffuse enlargement of the pancreas consistent with pancreatitis. A diagnosis of severe acute pancreatitis secondary to high triglycerides was made based on the revised Atlanta classification 2012. The patient was initially managed with intravenous boluses of normal saline followed by continuous insulin infusion. Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA) was ruled out due to a past medical history of diabetes. Her clinical course was complicated by acute respiratory distress syndrome requiring intubation and mechanical ventilation. During the course, she improved symptomatically and was extubated. She was started on nasogastric feeding initially and subsequently switched to oral diet as tolerated. After initial management of HTG with insulin infusion, oral gemfibrozil was started for long-term treatment of HTG. Emerging literature implicates HTG as an independent indicator of poor prognosis in acute pancreatitis (AP). Despite the paucity of data, the risk of developing AP must be considered even at triglyceride levels lower than 1000 mg/dL.