Pancreatic Cancer

Pancreatic cancer usually starts in the exocrine cells, which produce digestive juices.

Symptoms include:

  • Jaundice
  • Pain in the upper or middle abdomen and back
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Loss of appetite
  • Fatigue
  • Depression

Risk factors for developing pancreatic cancer include:

  • Smoking
  • Chronic pancreatitis
  • Inherited conditions
  • Familial pancreatic cancer syndromes
  • Long-standing diabetes

After performing an exam, Dr. Jones may order several tests, including:

  • CT scan    
  • MRI
  • Endoscopic ultrasound
  • Laparoscopy
  • Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography
  • Percutaneous transhepatic cholangiography (procedure used to X-ray liver and bile ducts)
  • Biopsy

Pancreatic Cancer Treatment
Treatments for pancreatic cancer include surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy. According to the American Cancer Society, only about 23% of patients with cancer of the exocrine pancreas are still living a year after diagnosis. Only about 4% are still living five years after being diagnosed.