Pancreatic cancer develops within the tissues of your pancreas. Pancreas is an important endocrine organ. Pancreas aids in the digestion of foods by producing enzymes that the body uses to digest fats, carbohydrates, and proteins. Pancreas also produces insulin which is responsible for controlling glucose levels in your blood.
The exact cause of pancreatic cancer is not fully understood. There are certain risk factors that may put you at a higher risk of developing the cancer. You may be at an increased risk if you are exposed to certain chemicals that are carcinogenic in nature. Smoking of cigarettes is one of them.
Signs and symptoms of pancreatic cancer generally do not appear until the cancer has advanced. Generally, a tumor in the pancreas does not cause any symptoms. If at all any symptoms appear, it is important to remember that these are similar to the signs of several other conditions and can be the result of any of those conditions.
Pancreas is located deep inside your body. Therefore, it is not easy to detect it in routine exams. Often, the pancreatic cancer is diagnosed in late stages when it has already advanced. Your doctor will gather necessary information to make a diagnosis through several tests and procedures such as blood tests and imaging tests.
Your age, overall well-being, your preferences, and the stage of the cancer determines which treatment is most suitable for you. The main objective of the treatment is to completely remove the cancer, if possible. If removal is not possible, your doctor will try to control the growth of the cancer.