As a PC survivor. I am here today because I was diagnosed very early through a Bilirubin blood test. It was part of my quarterly series of blood tests as a diabetic. Thus, I was able to have Whipple surgery. Here I am today 3 1/2+ years post surgery.
Yet, unfortunately most of those who get PC are not diagnosed in time. So, today’s post focuses on signs and symptoms of pancreatic cancer.
The following discussion and chart are from the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute:
“The pancreas produces fluids that help digest (break down) food, and hormones, such as insulin, to help control blood sugar levels. The digestive fluids are produced by exocrine pancreas cells, and the hormones are produced by endocrine pancreas cells. About 95 percent of pancreatic cancers begin with the exocrine cells, and are called pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma or other types of carcinomas. Another type of pancreatic tumor is called a pancreatic endocrine tumor, and these tumors originate from the endocrine cells. Making the distinction between these two kinds of pancreatic cancer is important, as patients with these two tumor types are treated differently.”
“Pancreatic cancer is a very complex condition to treat, since symptoms are often not apparent until the cancer has spread beyond the pancreas. These are some of the leading risk factors:
* Pancreatic cysts
* Long-standing diabetes
* Chronic pancreatitis (inflammation of the pancreas, especially in people who smoke)
* Age (55+ years)
* Race (African-Americans are more likely to develop pancreatic cancer than white, Hispanic, or Asian-Americans)
* Family history of pancreatic cancer
* Genetic factors
PLEASE get a regular battery of blood tests that relate to a wide range of possible ailments. Be proactive. Not reactive.
Today, we presenting an infographic from Cancer Treatment Centers of America. This chart presents a more holistic approach to patient care. Every step in the process must be coordinated among treatment modalities.
Click twice to view a larger version.
We extend a warm welcome to Living Well with Cancer. This blog is for anyone — or your families — dealing with serious health issues. It is written by an extremely lucky pancreatic cancer survivor.
To access a FREE PDF file of Surviving Cancer and Embracing Life: My Personal Journal, please click “Book” in the upper right. There are instructions as well a link to a Kindle E-book version for $0.99. PLEASE share the book with anyone you think needs some inspiration and hope.
Why This Blog?
There is a light at the end of the tunnel, even if that light is not as bright as before. And sometimes, we have to fight to see that light. I am NOT a medical professional. I am not alone in my battle with cancer. This is one person’s journey, both the ups and downs – with the strong determination to have the best life possible for as long as possible.
I am a pancreatic cancer survivor. I underwent an 8-½ hour Whipple surgery to remove the cancer. I had a lot of problems during chemo. As a diabetic, I passed out from low blood sugar a few days after finishing chemo. As a result, I had to miss my daughter’s bridal shower. And I had to have cement pumped into my back. I have a lot of other stuff going on. But enough of that. I am NOT complaining. I just want you to see where I have been – and where I still am going.
With this blog, I want to offer hope and support to those dealing with any terrible disease and their families. Why? To quote the late NY Yankee star Lou Gehrig when he was honored at Yankee Stadium while dying from ALS: “Today I consider myself the luckiest man on the face of the earth.”