In the early stages, pancreatic cancer does not cause any symptoms. However, as the disease progresses, common symptoms may include:
Some people may also experience pancreatitis (swelling of the pancreas) and sudden onset of diabetes. If you experience any of the symptoms mentioned above, visit your doctor for further evaluation.
Diagnosing pancreatic cancer, especially in its early stages, can be difficult as the pancreas is deeply seated in the abdomen and a physical examination is impossible. If your doctor suspects pancreatic cancer, they will prescribe a few tests:
Treatment options vary based on the stage of your cancer, with early-stage cancer being localised and easier to treat, while treatment for advanced stage 3 and stage 4 pancreatic cancer depends upon the spread of cancer.
Pancreatic cancer is usually treated by a multidisciplinary team comprising a medical oncologist, gastroenterologist, surgical and radiation oncologists. After evaluating your symptoms, medical history, and diagnostic test results, your experienced healthcare team will decide how to treat pancreatic cancer in your body.
The pancreatic cancer treatment options suggested to you will depend upon several factors such as:
Standard treatment options for pancreatic cancer include:
Other treatments that may be combined with those mentioned above include targeted therapy, immunotherapy and participation in clinical trials.