Pancreatic Carcinoma

The pancreas is a large organ located behind your stomach. It makes and releases enzymes into the intestines that help your body absorb foods, especially fats. Hormones that help your body control your blood sugar levels are made in special cells in the pancreas called islet cells. Tumors can also occur in these cells, but those are referred to as islet cell tumors.

Factors That May Increase Risk of Developing Pancreatic Cancer:

  • People with diabetes
  • People with long term inflammation of the pancreas (chronic pancreatitis)
  • Smokers
  • Slightly more common in women than men
  • Risk increases with age

Symptoms of Pancreatic Cancer: 

A tumor or cancer may grow without any symptoms at first. This means that pancreatic cancer is often advanced when it is first diagnosed. Early symptoms of pancreatic cancer may include:

  • Dark urine and clay-colored stools
  • Fatigue and weakness
  • Jaundice (a yellow color in the skin, eyes, or mucous membranes)
  • Weight loss with loss of appetite
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Pain or discomfort in the upper part of the abdomen

If you have any of these persistent symptoms or signs that are of particular concern, please consult your physician.

For more information on Pancreatic Cancer, please go to:

National Cancer Institute

Pancreatic Cancer

U.S. National Library of Medicine

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