Pancreatic Cancer News

Pancreatic cancer occurs when a tumor forms within the pancreas, a fish-shaped organ surrounded by the liver and the organs of the digestive system. The pancreas is responsible for producing enzymes that break down food.

Most cancers of the pancreas are called adenocarcinomas, which are tumors that form in the gland cells of the pancreas.

Causes and Symptoms

Things such as smoking, diabetes, obesity or a family history of pancreatic cancer can increase your chances of developing the disease. If you have inflammation of the pancreas because of a disorder such as pancreatitis, that also can enhance your risk. Researchers are also examining whether heavy alcohol use or a diet that is high in fat might increase your risk for pancreatic cancer.

When pancreatic cancer presents symptoms, one of the main warning signs is pain in the upper part of your belly or the middle of the back. Jaundice, in which the skin and eyes have a tinge of yellow, also sometimes occurs. You may experience dark urine or stools that are pale or float in the toilet. Nausea and vomiting are additional warning signs of pancreatic cancer.

Treatment of Pancreatic Cancer

Treatment for pancreatic cancer is most effective if the cancer is caught at an early stage and the tumor can be completely removed via surgery. However, even if the cancer has grown or spread, treatments can still help the patient live a longer and better-quality life. Common treatments for pancreatic cancer include surgery, radiation therapy, targeted therapy and chemotherapy.

SOURCES: American Cancer Society; U.S. National Cancer Institute

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Chinese-based study, analysis of previous research point to everyday use decreasing the odds

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International committee finds thinner folks less likely to develop variety of malignancies

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But research can't prove cause-and-effect and more investigation is needed, experts say

Oral Hygiene and Pancreatic Cancer

Could bad oral hygiene up risk for pancreatic cancer? New research investigates.

Is Type 1 Diabetes Linked to Raised Risk of Certain Cancers?

Study suggests, but doesn't prove, that odds increase for some types of tumors, but drop for others

Researchers Pursue Clue Between Obesity, Breast and Pancreatic Cancer

People with excess weight may have more of a potentially tumor-promoting substance, scientists say

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Agency says medication can be used in combination with others for advanced cases

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Study found procedure improved survival for people with stage 3 disease

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Blood Protein May Spot Pancreatic Cancer Early

But more research is needed before test is used for monitoring or screening, researchers say

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Eighty percent of lung cancer deaths linked to smoking, researchers say

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Shortage of vitamin D may be to blame

Diabetes Drug May Not Guard Against Pancreatic Cancer

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Study Yields Genetic Insights Into Pancreatic Cancer

Multiple gene mutations identified that could be targets for treatment

Study Probes Use of MRI to Spot Pancreatic Cancer in High-Risk Patients

Small trial suggests the scans might help, but experts aren't so sure

Report Shows Progress in America's War on Cancer

Small, but steady declines in deaths seen over past decade

More Americans Surviving Cancer Today Than 20 Years Ago

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Device Aims to Deliver Cancer-Killing Drugs Directly to Pancreas

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