Pancreatic cancer is a serious and potentially life-threatening form of cancer that affects the pancreas, a small organ located behind the stomach. It is one of the most deadly forms of cancer, with a five-year survival rate of just 9%. Early detection is key to improving the chances of survival, so it is important to be aware of the signs and symptoms of pancreatic cancer.
The most common symptom of pancreatic cancer is abdominal pain. This pain may be felt in the upper abdomen, back, or side, and may be accompanied by nausea and vomiting. Other symptoms may include weight loss, jaundice (yellowing of the skin and eyes), and changes in bowel habits.
If you experience any of these symptoms, it is important to see your doctor right away. Your doctor will perform a physical exam and may order tests such as blood tests, imaging tests, or a biopsy to determine if cancer is present.
In addition to the physical symptoms, there are certain risk factors that can increase your chances of developing pancreatic cancer. These include smoking, obesity, diabetes, and a family history of the disease. If you have any of these risk factors, it is important to talk to your doctor about your risk and what steps you can take to reduce it.
Finally, it is important to be aware of the signs and symptoms of pancreatic cancer and to see your doctor if you experience any of them. Early detection is key to improving the chances of survival, so don’t delay in seeking medical attention.