Pancreatic Cancer Treatment in Fort Myers, FL
Pancreatic cancer occurs when cells multiply out of control and a mass of tissue grows within the pancreas. Sometimes this mass is benign (not cancerous) or can become malignant (cancerous). There are two types of tumors that grow in the pancreas: exocrine or neuroendocrine tumors. About 93% of all pancreatic tumors are exocrine tumors, and the most common kind of pancreatic cancer is called adenocarcinoma. According to the American Cancer Society, pancreatic cancer represents approximately 3% of all cancers and 7% of all cancer deaths in the United States. It occurs slightly more often in men than in women.
The Lee Health Regional Cancer Center is here to help guide you through the next steps to treatment. Call the facility at 239-343-9500
Symptoms of Pancreatic Cancer
Your healthcare provider might suspect pancreatic cancer if you have some symptoms and you’ve recently developed diabetes or pancreatitis — a painful condition due to the inflammation of the pancreas. Most people don’t experience early signs of pancreatic cancer. As the disease progresses, however, people may notice:
• Blood clots in the body
• New or worsening diabetes
• Nausea and vomiting
• Upper abdominal pain that may spread to the back
• Loss of appetite
• Light colored poop
• Dark colored pee
• Weight loss
What Are The Stages of Pancreatic Cancer?
Pancreatic cancer is categorized into five different stages. Depending on the size and location of the tumor and whether or not the cancer has spread to other areas.
• Stage 0: Abnormal cells in the lining of the pancreas. The cells could become cancerous and spread to nearby tissue.
• Stage 1: The tumor is in the pancreas.
• Stage 2: The tumor is in the pancreas and has either spread to nearby tissues, organs or lymph nodes.
• Stage 3: Cancer has spread to major blood vessels near the pancreas. It may have also spread to nearby lymph nodes.
• Stage 4: Cancer has spread to distant areas in the body, such as the liver, lungs, or abdominal cavity. It has possibly spread to organs, tissues, or lymph nodes near the pancreas.
How is Pancreatic Cancer Treated?
Pancreatic cancer treatment depends on where the tumor is located, what stage it is in, how healthy you are and whether or not cancer has spread beyond the pancreas. Pancreatic cancer, which is not often detected early, tends to spread to nearby lymph nodes, then to the liver, and lungs. Even though pancreatic cancer has a poor survival rate, it can potentially be cured if detected and treated very early.