Pancreatic cancer screening and symptoms

Pancreatic cancer screening and symptoms

Zain Syed
Zain Syed

How to know if you have Pancreatic Cancer?

The pancreas is the organ in your body responsible for many things. One is releasing special enzymes that help break down your food. Most people know the pancreas as the organ that helps regulate the body’s sugars with insulin and glucagon.

The symptoms of pancreatic cancer include:

  • Weight loss
  • Pancreatitis
  • Newly diagnosed diabetes
  • Uncontrolled diabetes
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Heartburn
  • Newly diagnosed blood clots
  • Yellowing of eyes and skin (jaundice)

When should you get screened?

Risk factors of pancreatic cancer include:

  • Smoking
  • Heavy alcohol use
  • Diabetes
  • Obesity
  • Lack of exercise
  • Chronic pancreatitis
  • Family history of pancreatic cancer
  • Genetics
  • Family history of pancreatic cancer

Why is screening important?

Localized cancer is limited to the primary site.

Regional is cancer that has spread to the surrounding lymph nodes

Distant is cancer that has metastasized

The 5-year survival rate for pancreatic cancer is 11.5%. Most (52%) of pancreatic cancer are diagnosed once it has metastasized. The 5-year survival rate of localized cancer is 43.9%.

 

As you can see early screening is very important. If you or a loved one falls within the risk factors or is experiencing any symptoms reach out to your doctor and discuss being screened for pancreatic cancer.

 

Zain Syed
Zain Syed
I am a Pharmacist specializing in oncology and pain management. I have worked in various settings, including Infusion, Clinic, Inpatient, Outpatient, and Investigational Drug Services. The lack of access, financial struggles, and people falling through the cracks leads to worse outcomes and increased costs. I chose healthcare to help people and want to help at scale, my mission and passion, not just one person at a time. Cancer can be a lonely journey, but it does not have to be. I look forward to building a community that educates and supports each other through difficult times.

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