PREVIOUS QUESTION:

 

NEXT QUESTION:

 

How is surgery used to treat pancreatic cancer?

ANSWER

Pancreatic cancer is very hard to control. But if it is caught early and the cancer hasn't spread beyond the pancreas, it can be treated with surgery. This offers the best outcome for pancreatic cancer. The surgery is called a "Whipple procedure," or pancreaticoduodenectomy, and is named after Dr. George Hoyt Whipple, the surgeon who pioneered it. If possible, the surgeon removes the malignant tumor, leaving as much of the normal pancreas as possible to allow continued pancreatic function. Less often, the entire pancreas must be removed. If a patient undergoes a total pancreatectomy, a lifelong regimen of replacement enzymes and hormones, including insulin, must be administered.

SOURCES: 

American Cancer Society: "Learn About Cancer: Pancreatic Cancer." 

National Cancer Institute: "Pancreatic Cancer."

The National Pancreas Foundation: "About Pancreatic Cancer."

Reviewed by Laura J. Martin on July 30, 2017

SOURCES: 

American Cancer Society: "Learn About Cancer: Pancreatic Cancer." 

National Cancer Institute: "Pancreatic Cancer."

The National Pancreas Foundation: "About Pancreatic Cancer."

Reviewed by Laura J. Martin on July 30, 2017

NEXT QUESTION:

How can the timing of diagnosing pancreatic cancer affect the outcome?

WAS THIS ANSWER HELPFUL

THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.

    This tool does not provide medical advice. See additional information.

    Other Answers On: