The prognosis for pancreatitis depends on many different factors, such as the underlying condition causing pancreatitis, the severity of the pancreatitis, and the patient's age and underlying medical problems. Patients with pancreatitis can experience everything from a brief self-limited illness with a full recovery to severe course of illness that can lead to life-threatening complications and death. If an individual has repeated episodes of acute pancreatitis, they may develop chronic pancreatitis, a lifelong condition that can lead to a decreased quality of life.
The underlying idea is simple but powerful. If we are trying to explain some phenomenon, X, then we need to identify variations in the likelihood of X or the rate of X, and look for potential causes that (1) vary across the relevant circumstances in a way that could explain X and (2) that we can connect to the outcomes for X in some way. For example, with the gender distinctive clothing question, some ways to better specify the question and look at it through comparisons are: