Pancreatic cancer is a malignancy of the cells of the pancreas, (an organ that lies parallel, at the back the stomach). The pancreas releases various enzymes that help in the process of digestion, and also releases hormones that control the metabolism of glucose.
Pancreatic cancer occurs when the cells of the pancreas show mutation. Mutation makes the cells replicate and proliferate autonomously and without any restraint, and also, makes them stay after normal cells normally die. The build up of these abnormal cells result in the development of a tumor. The malignancy may extend to nearby as well as distant organs.
Pancreatic Cancer Causes
The exact pancreatic cancer causes are not yet known. Though, research says that common triggers for pancreatic cancer are: smoking, diabetes, obesity, chronic pancreatitis, and a strong family history of the disease.
Below are mentioned the detailed pancreatic cancer causes:
Age: Increasing age, particularly individuals over age of 60 years are at risk.
Race: Being black is one of the significant pancreatic cancer causes
Obesity: Being obese raises the risk considerably.
Disorder of the pancreas: Chronic pancreatitis or chronic inflammatory condition of the pancreas is also one of the important pancreatic cancer causes.
Diabetes: diabetes increases the chances of developing cancer of the pancreas.
Genetic predisposition: Family history of genetic disorders like Peutz-Jeghers syndrome, Lynch Syndrome, BRCA2 gene mutation, etc.is significant.
Family history: Personal or family history of pancreatic cancer
Smoking: tobacco is a vital triggering factor
The clinical manifestations of pancreatic cancer are:
- Pain in the upper part of the abdomen. The pain radiates to the back
- Unexplained weight loss and loss of appetite
Treatment of Pancreatic Cancer
The time of diagnosis greatly influences the treatment plan and the prognosis and survival rate of pancreatic cancer. Treatment of pancreatic cancer is based on the stage of cancer, location of the tumor, degree of spread, patients age, his overall health and his preference.
By and large, the treatment regime for pancreatic cancer consists of surgical intervention to excise the tumor, administration of chemotherapy drugs to obliterate the cancerous cells and radiation therapy to help destroy and prevent the replication of the malignant cells.