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Pancreatic Cancer, pancreatic cancer symptom, pancreatic cancer treatment, cause of pancreatic cancer
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Pancreatic cancer is fairly rare in the US. It's a "silent" disease because it doesn't usually have any symptoms in the early stages. Ovarian cancer is fairly rare among women in the US. And it's hard to find in the early stages. But women can lower their risk. But people can take steps to lower their risk. To access your Pancreatic Cancer Risk completely, at ScienceofLife we have produced a general questionnaire with a fair knowledge of risk Factors and related knowlegebase.

Questionnaire : To estimate your risk of pancreatic cancer, take about 2 to 3 minutes to answer some questions about your health, lifestyle and personal background. Please fill in these questions to access your risk of Pancreatic Cancer.

1. What is your sex?  
2. What is your age?    
Years
3. Have you ever had any type of cancer (except for non-melanoma skin cancer)?  
4. Do you eat 3 or more servings of vegetables a day? 1 serving is about 1 cup of raw leafy greens or ½ cup of other vegetables, raw or cooked.  
5. Do you smoke cigarettes?
 No, I never smoked cigarettes
 I used to smoke cigarettes, but I quit
 Yes
6. Have you ever been told that you have diabetes or a problem with high blood sugar?  
7. Do you have chronic pancreatitis?  
8. Has your brother, sister or parent ever had pancreatic cancer?  

  

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Risk factors : Most scientists agree that these things affect the risk of pancreatic cancer. Some may apply to you, but others may not.

Age and pancreatic cancer : The risk of pancreatic cancer goes up with age. The disease is rare in people under 45, and most cases are found in people over 65.

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Sex and pancreatic cancer : Men have a greater risk of pancreatic cancer than women. This difference, though, is getting smaller over time in the United States. Exactly why is unclear. One possible reason is changes in the rates of cancer risk factors, like smoking. Back to Risk Factors

Vegetables and pancreatic cancer : People who eat at least 3 servings of vegetables a day have a lower risk of pancreatic cancer. Scientists aren't sure why. One reason may be that they contain fiber. Fiber may help prevent cells in the pancreas from becoming cancerous. 1 serving of vegetables is:
  • 1 cup of raw leafy greens like lettuce or spinach
  • ½ cup of other vegetables, raw or cooked
  • ½ cup of cooked beans or peas
People who eat vegetables also have a lower risk of colon cancer, heart disease, diabetes and stroke. And women who eat vegetables have a lower risk of breast cancer.

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Smoking cigarettes and pancreatic cancer : People who smoke cigarettes have a higher risk of pancreatic cancer. Cigarette smoke contains chemicals that damage the genetic structure (DNA) of the body's cells. DNA damage causes cells to become cancerous. But after a person stops smoking, new cells replace damaged ones. People who smoke cigarettes have a higher risk of cancers of the bladder, kidney, pancreas, lip, mouth, tongue, larynx, throat and esophagus. Women who smoke have a higher risk of cervical cancer. People who smoke even have a higher risk of other diseases like diabetes, bone loss (osteoporosis), emphysema and bronchitis!

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Diabetes and pancreatic cancer : Diabetes occurs when the body doesn't make enough insulin or when the body can't use the insulin it makes. Insulin is a hormone that converts food into energy. People who have diabetes have a higher risk of pancreatic cancer. Scientists aren't sure why. Diabetes may be a sign that islet cells in the pancreas don't work. Islet cells help other cells in the pancreas grow normally. When they stop working, cells in the pancreas can become cancerous. People who have diabetes also have a higher risk of heart disease and stroke. And women who have diabetes may have a slightly higher risk of uterine cancer. 

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Chronic pancreatitis and pancreatic cancer : Chronic pancreatitis occurs when the pancreas swells for a long period of time. People who have chronic pancreatitis have a higher risk of pancreatic cancer. Scientists aren't sure why. One reason may be that it causes cells in the pancreas to grow and divide too quickly. Cells have less chance to repair the DNA damage that may have taken place. DNA damage can lead to pancreatic cancer.

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Family history and pancreatic cancer : People who have a mother, father, brother, or sister with pancreatic cancer have a higher risk of the disease. This is because some pancreatic cancer is linked to mutations in the genetic structure (DNA) of the body's cells. These mutations can be passed on from generation to generation. With many diseases, people who have a family history have a higher risk. A family history raises the risk of several cancers like bladder, kidney, skin cancer. It also raises the risk of diabetes, bone loss (osteoporosis) and stroke. Back to Risk Factors

Fact Analysis

What is pancreatic cancer? Pancreatic cancer occurs when cells in the pancreas grow out of control. The cells clump together and form a malignant (cancerous) tumor. The pancreas is a small organ in the abdomen that makes digestive juices. It also makes hormones that help the body use the energy it gets from food.

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How common is pancreatic cancer? About 28,000 Americans are diagnosed with pancreatic cancer each year.

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Who is at risk of getting pancreatic cancer? Anyone can get pancreatic cancer, but it usually strikes people over age 50. And the risk goes up with age. Men are more likely to get pancreatic cancer than women. People who smoke and people with a family history of pancreatic cancer also have a higher risk.

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How do you lower your risk of getting pancreatic cancer?

  • Don't smoke
  • Eat at least 3 servings of fruits and vegetables every day
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What is the screening test? There is no good screening test to find pancreatic cancer in its early stages. If you're concerned about pancreatic cancer, talk to a doctor about your risk.

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What are the symptoms of pancreatic cancer? Pancreatic cancer often has few symptoms in its early stages. But as the cancer grows, symptoms may include:
  • Pain in the back or stomach (which may ease after meals)
  • Weight loss
  • Bloating of the stomach
  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea
  • Jaundiced (yellow) look in the eyes and on the skin

These symptoms may also be caused by something less serious. Only a doctor can know for sure. If you have any of these symptoms, see a doctor immediately.

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