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Pol Arch Med Wewn. 1990 Dec;84(6):363-9.

[Diagnostic value of the NBT-PABA test in chronic pancreatitis].

[Article in Polish]

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  • 1Kliniki Gastroenterologii AM w Białymstoku.


The aim of this study was an assessment of the usefulness of indirect test NBT-PABA in evaluation of pancreatic exocrine function in patients from our department treated for chronic pancreatitis. The study was carried out on 67 persons divided in three groups: I - healthy controls (n = 23), II - patients with non-pancreatic diseases (n = 17), III - patients with chronic pancreatitis (n = 27). On the basis of degree of impairment of exocrine function in the secretin-pancreozymin test (SPT), group III was divided in three subgroups: with mild (A), moderate (B), severe (C) exocrine insufficiency. NBT-PABA test was performed using reagents (firm's Hoffman-La Roche) in accordance with the added instructions. In healthy persons (I) average PABA excretion in urine was 62% and lower normal limit was 30%. In patients with non-pancreatic diseases (II) mean urinary PABA excretion was 52% and in the group with chronic pancreatitis (III) markedly lower results were obtained (mean = 26%), p less than 0.05. In order to evaluate diagnostic sensitivity in relation to the degree of pancreatic insufficiency, results of NBT-PABA test were compared with the results of SPT. The results of both tests completely coincided in subgroups III B, and III C, but in subgroups III A, in only 43% of cases it was observed. The specificity of NBT-PABA test (i.e. frequency of normal results in controls and patients with non-pancreatic diseases) was 87%. Our results suggest that NBT-PABA test may be a useful procedure in diagnosis of chronic pancreatitis with severe and moderate exocrine insufficiency. In cases of mild exocrine dysfunction its value is limited.

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