By Mayo Clinic Staff

The Whipple procedure (pancreatoduodenectomy) is a complex operation to remove part of the pancreas, part of the small intestine and the gallbladder.

The Whipple procedure is most often used to treat pancreatic cancer that's confined to the head of the pancreas. But it may also be used to treat tumors and other abnormalities of the pancreas, small intestine and bile duct.

After performing the Whipple procedure, surgeons work to reattach the remaining portions of the digestive system so that your body can digest the food that you eat and you can expel waste normally.

The Whipple procedure is a difficult and demanding operation for both the person undergoing surgery and the surgeon.

July 21, 2015