Aim: The generation of oxygen free radicals has been implicated in the pathogenesis of experimental pancreatitis. The aim of this study was to determine the role of oxygen free radicals in patients with acute pancreatitis. Methods: The plasma levels of C-reactive protein (CRP), lipid peroxide (LPO), myeloperoxidase (MPO) and superoxide dismutase (SOD) were measured in 13 patients with acute pancreatitis and 14 healthy volunteers. Results: Among the patients with acute pancreatitis, there were higher plasma levels of LPO and MPO and lower SOD activity in patients with severe pancreatitis than in those with mild pancreatitis. However, there was no significant difference in the serum marker of oxidative stress no matter what the etiology was. The LPO level was especially correlated with the concentration of serum CRP and CT severity index. Conclusion: The oxygen free radicals may be closely associated with inflammatory process and the severity of acute pancreatitis. Especially, the concentration of plasma LPO is a meaningful index for determining the severity of the disease.
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