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Pancreatic Cancer

What is Pancreatic Cancer

​Pancreatic cancer is a cancer that begins in the tissues of pancreas. The two types of pancreatic cancer are adenocarcinoma (cancer that forms in the pancreas ducts) and endocrine cancer (cancer that forms in the hormone-producing cells).

Causes of the condition

​The cancer occurs when cells in the pancreas develop genetic mutations. These mutations cause cells to grow uncontrollably and to continue living after normal cells would die. These accumulations of cells can form a tumour.

Signs & symptoms

​Signs and symptoms often do not occur until the disease is advanced these may include:

  • Upper abdominal pain that may radiate to the back
  • Yellowing of your skin and the whites of the eyes (jaundice)
  • Loss of appetite
  • Weight loss
  • Depression
Diagnosis and treatment options

Test and diagnosis

No standard screening exists for pancreatic cancer. Diagnostic methods include:

  • Ultrasound
  • Computerised tomography (CT) scan
  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
  • Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP)
  • Endoscopic ultrasound (EUS)
  • Percutanenous transhepatic cholangiography (PTC)
  • Biopsy
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