Six patients with a drain in the main pancreatic duct were studied. Ethanol was given orally with individually adjusted doses aiming at a blood value of 0.8/1000 (17.6 mmol/l). Concentrations of ethanol in venous blood and pancreatic juice were recorded for three hours. Similar studies were made when ethanol was administered as an intravenous priming dose followed by a maintenance infusion. After orally administered ethanol, pancreatic juice values were higher than those in blood for a short period of time. The relations between median concentrations and time were incongruous curves consistent with a significant treatment by time interaction. Intravenous administration resulted in a similar pattern, but the interaction was not statistically significant. These findings indicate that the human pancreas may secrete ethanol.
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