• By Laurel Kelly

Living With Cancer: Understanding pancreatic cancer

November 17, 2017

a medical illustration of pancreatic cancerPancreatic cancer: An overview 
November is Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month, which makes it a good time to learn more about this disease. Pancreatic cancer begins in the pancreas — an organ that secretes enzymes that aid digestion and hormones that regulate the metabolism of sugars. Pancreatic cancer, which typically spreads rapidly to nearby organs, seldom is detected in its early stages. One sign of pancreatic cancer is new-onset diabetes. Treatment may include surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy or a combination of these. Learn more about the symptoms and risk factors of pancreatic cancer and when you should see your health care provider.

Video: Pancreatic cancer survivor
Research offers the hope of better treatments for people with pancreatic cancer. Watch the story of one patient who's winning her battle.

Low blood cell counts: A side effect of cancer treatment 
Your health care provider may monitor your blood cell counts carefully during your cancer treatment. There's a good reason you're having your blood drawn so often — low blood cell counts put you at risk of serious complications. Learn more about some of the causes and complications of low blood cell counts.