Pancreatic cancer is the abnormal growth of the pancreatic cells. Often the pancreatic cells develop tumours and these tumours are malignant in nature. Pancreatic cancer is of two types- endocrine pancreatic cancer and exocrine pancreatic cancer. Pancreatic cancer is quite rare among other types of cancer.
The most difficult part is that pancreatic cancer often remains undiagnosed. But there are certain symptoms that are common in the case of pancreatic cancer. If you suffer from chronic jaundice, nausea, appetite loss or sharp abdominal pain the, at least visit your doctor once to determine if you have pancreatic cancer or not.
There are different techniques which can be used to cure cancer or stop it. This includes surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy, metal or plastic biliary stents. Doctors determine the treatment strategy after discussing the patents medical condition, age and other factors.
There are different stages of pancreatic cancer and the severity of the disease increases with time. Pancreatic cancer has five stages. Stage zero to stage four.
In stage zero usually, the surface of the pancreas has cancerous cells. These cells are situated on the top layer of the duct of the pancreas and are situated in a certain place. If cancer diagnosed in this stage effective treatment is possible. The last stage is stage four. In this stage, cancer has spread in different organs from the pancreases. In this stage, only biliary stents can give some relief. You can choose a metal or plastic stent made by reputed biliary stent manufacturers.
Doctors check initial syndrome-like jaundice, abdominal pain etc. To make sure if a patient has pancreatic cancer or not the doctors take help from lab tests and imaging tests. The doctor may prescribe you a blood test, urine test or stool test. The doctor may also recommend tests like an abdominal ultrasound, CT scan, MRI, PET scan or angiogram to check if there is any tumour present and how severe the condition is. If the test indicates that there is some tumour in pancreas then the doctor may ask the patient to get a biopsy test done. In the biopsy test, few cells are taken from the tumour to check them in microscopic level. This test can determine if the cells are benign or malignant.
Treatment is different for different stages. The objective if the treatment is to destroy or remove the cancerous cells and give relief from painful symptoms. The treatment also aims to prevent cancer from coming back. Common methods are-
Doctors remove cancer effective part of pancreas with surgery. The doctors may choose to remove part or the full pancreas with parts some other organ like lymph nodes. Sodium, stomach to prevent cancer from spreading. This means, if the cancer is detected in the initial stage the procedure is easy. But if it has spread all over then the process becomes risky and tricky.
It is combined with surgery for best results. With chemotherapy, the cancers cells are destroyed completely.
- Radiation therapy
If the cancer is in the initial stage, often doctors use radioactive rays to destroy cancer cells completely.
- If cancer has spread over other organs then doctors use biliary stents to unblock the bile duct so that it can give the patient’s some relief from certain problems.
Pancreatic cancer often gets unnoticed until it reaches a later stage. Because of this, effective treatment becomes impossible in many situations. But early diagnosis can cure cancer. Hence, if patients are diagnosed with this disease they must go for immediate medical treatment.