Pancreatic cancer (pancreatic carcinoma) is a dangerous type of cancer. The tumour goes unnoticed for a long time. Jaundice, abdominal and back pain only occur at an advanced stage. Treatment mainly includes painkillers, chemotherapy and possibly surgery.
Pancreatic cancer initially causes few or no symptoms. By the time it becomes noticeable, the cancer is often quite advanced:
- Loss of appetite and weight loss
- Digestive disorders, nausea, vomiting
- Loss of strength
- Anaemia, fatigue
- Night sweats
Causes and treatment
The exact cause is unknown. Some risk factors are:
Further treatment by your doctor / in hospital
- CT scan (computed tomography)
- MRI (magnetic resonance imaging)
- Examination of pancreatic and bile ducts using a contrast agent (ERCP)
- Duodenal endoscopy with biopsy
Pancreatic cancer is generally difficult to treat and often cannot be definitively cured.
When to see a doctor?
- Painless and increasing yellowish discolouration of skin or eyes (jaundice)
- Involuntary weight loss
- Persistent and unclear pain in the back and stomach area