Pancreatic Pathology Online

Pathology of Pancreatic Disease in AIDS

Dr Sampurna Roy MD             July 2016


Patients with AIDS can develop pancreatic disease from causes not related to AIDS or AIDS-specific lesions.

AIDS-specific causes include opportunistic infection, AIDS-associated neoplasia, and medications  used to treat complications of AIDS.

Pancreatic involvement is usually part of  a widely disseminated tumour and rarely produces clinical symptoms.  

Patients with acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) can develop biliary and pancreatic disorders, like sclerosing cholangitis and acute pancreatitis and in rare cases pancreas may show chronic pancreatic changes.

Acute pancreatitis, reported in pediatric patients with acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS), is said to have a poor prognosis.

Respiratory failure and sepsis usually constitute the predominant causes of death.

Histopathological examination reveal nonspecific changes, such as edema, inflammation, fibrosis, inspissated material in acini and ducts, and enlarged Langerhans' islet.

Pancreatic opportunistic pathogens include  Mycobacterium tuberculosis ; Mycobacterium avium intracellulare, Cryptococcus neoformans ; Candida ; Aspergillus,  Toxoplasma gondii ; Pneumocystis carinii ; Cytomegalovirus  ; Herpes simplex ; Cryptosporidium  and microsporidium.

Although cytomegaloviral pancreatic infection can occur without clinically evident pancreatic disease,  cytomegalovirus can cause pancreatitis.

Other opportunistic infections that can cause pancreatitis include Toxoplasma gondii, Cryptococcus neoformans, and Candida.

Mycobacterial infection can produce a pancreatic abscess.

Hepatobiliary or pancreatic duct infection by cytomegalovirus, cryptosporidium,and microsporidium causes irregular ductular narrowing and dilatation.

AIDS-associated pancreatic neoplasms include Kaposi's sarcoma and lymphoma. 

Visit: AIDS:Cutaneous lesion associated with AIDS ; AIDS related malignant tumours ; Kaposi Sarcoma

Other related posts:


Further reading:

Antiretroviral drugs and acute pancreatitis in HIV/AIDS patients

Simultaneous pancreas-kidney transplantation in HIV-infected patients: a case report and literature review.

Chronic pancreatic alterations in AIDS patients.

The pancreas in AIDS.

Involvement of the pancreas in AIDS: a prospective study

AIDS-related non-Hodgkin's lymphoma of the pancreas

Tuberculous abscess of the pancreas in AIDS

AIDS and the pancreas in the HAART era

Acute pancreatitis in HIV/AIDS patients

Pancreatic disorders in pediatric acquired immune deficiency syndrome.  

Pancreatic disease in AIDS--a review.



Dr Sampurna Roy  MD

Consultant  Histopathologist (Kolkata - India)






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