Look at this drawing.
Again, this is here to help you.
Look at how all these pieces fit together.
Now the pancreas is kind of
that organ at the bottom.
You see where we have it labeled there?
Yeah, it's not the most attractive organ,
but it does seem super cool things.
The reason I wanted to pause here for a minute
is I wanted you to understand the concept of
all of these organs are connected
by the common bile duct.
So, start at the top.
You've got the liver, right?
And you see that green tube?
They've kind of showing you that
that's right in the meat of the liver.
When it comes down, the right and left hepatic
ducts come down and meet in the common bile duct.
Now that first stop is the gallbladder.
The gallbladder is nothing
more than a garage, right?
It's just a holder for extra
bile that the liver makes.
Follow the common bile duct down
with your pen or with your finger
and you'll see that it goes to the pancreas.
Now you see down the middle,
you have a pancreatic duct right through
the middle of the organ that hits
and connects up with the common bile duct,
and then that all empties into the duodenum.
Now, you'll care a lot more about this when
we start talking about liver and GI problems,
but for now, I want you to have solid in your mind,
these organs are all connected
by the common bile duct,
and they end up in the duodenum,
right after the stomach.
See, the pancreas, it's really
not that attractive, is it?
It's not that cute when it comes to an
organ, but it's extremely functional.
Cool part about your pancreas is it
might not be that great looking,
but it's both an exocrine
gland and an endocrine gland.
So I want you to write yourself
a note as to why this works.
Endocrine glands can secrete
things right into the bloodstream.
Well, from what we've already talked about,
you know that the pancreas can secrete
insulin right into the bloodstream,
so that's its endocrine function.
The exocrine function is a
secretion of the pancreatic juices
into that common bile duct, right?
Not into the bloodstream, but
into the common bile duct.
So that's what makes this pancreas twice as cool.
It's an endocrine gland, insulin and
glucagon right into the bloodstream.
And an exocrine gland, all those pancreatic
juices that have the enzymes in them
to help us digest food, and that's what it does.
The exocrine function, it breaks down food,
it secretes these digestive
enzymes, lipase and amylase,
and it goes right into that duct
to go right into the duodenum.
So, if we're worried about pancreatitis
or problems with the pancreas,
we always look at a lipase
and an amylase lab value.
But that's the exocrine function of the pancreas.
For diabetics, we focus more
on the endocrine function.
That's what controls blood glucose.
And the endocrine can put out both insulin,
which will draw glucose into the
cells for energy, and glucagon.
Glucagon is what tells the liver
to put out stored energy.
So it secretes hormones.
That's the endocrine function of the
pancreas right into the bloodstream.
What are the name of those 2 hormones?
Glucagon and insulin.
Insulin will cause your blood
sugar to raise or lower.
Insulin secretion will cause
your blood sugar to lower.
Glucagon secretion, out of the pancreas,
will cause your blood sugar to raise.
So that's a pretty good introduction to
the overall function of the pancreas.