Actor Rituraj Singh's death: What are pancreatic diseases that affected him?

Rituraj Singh, who was 59, was battling pancreatic diseases for a while. Photo: Instagram/riturajksingh/istock/magicmine

Popular TV actor Rituraj Singh, who has starred in many films and series like 'Made in Heaven,' 'Badrinath Ki Dulhania,' 'Yaariyan 2' and 'Anupamaa,' passed away on Monday night following a cardiac arrest. The 59-year-old was reportedly battling pancreatic diseases for a while. The pancreas, a vital organ behind our stomach, helps regulate blood sugar levels, and break down carbs, proteins and fats in the food we eat. A while ago, there were reports on India experiencing a rising trend of pancreatic disorders across the country. However, what are these diseases and what causes them?

Pancreatic diseases
They encompass a variety of conditions like pancreatic cancer - which can only be diagnosed at advanced stages due to lack of enough symptoms, Chronic Pancreatitis (often due to long-term alcohol consumption), Pancreatic Cysts, pancreatic insufficiency (lack of enough production of digestive enzymes) and the genetic condition called Cystic Fibrosis that leads to mucus build up in organs. 

What are the symptoms?
If you have pain in the upper abdomen or back, it can be a major symptom of pancreatic disease. Jaundice, nausea and vomiting, unexplained weight loss, changes in bowel habits due to impaired digestion, swelling in the abdomen, changes in urine or stool colour, fatigue and weakness and new onset diabetes can all be symptoms of underlying pancreatic diseases. 

How to treat pancreatic diseases?
The treatment depends on the severity of the condition and the specific issue. A proper diagnosis is the first step. They involve a combination of blood tests, medical history review, physical examination and imaging tests. Several specialists like gastroenterologists, hepatologists, oncologists and pancreatic surgeons can be involved in the treatment to ensure a comprehensive approach. 

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