The most insidious of all types of cancer: What Lifestyle our pancreas protects

To treat with low chances of Survival, hard and on the rise: pancreatic cancer is one of the greatest challenges for oncologists. Anyone who wants to protect themselves from the Tumor, should be healthy life and, above all, no Diabetes risk.

Pancreatic cancer, or medically: pancreatic carcinoma, is one of the frequent types of cancer. But no other is so treacherous: pancreatic cancer Sufferers and their Doctors to be attentive, when it is too late for a cure.

And while the survival rates for most types of cancer in recent years, increased significantly, it is in the pancreas-patients five years after diagnosis, still only eight percent. The average life expectancy after diagnosis is only two to three years, often only months remain in the patient.

The reason: There was for pancreatic cancer, hardly any medical progress, as you could in other tumour types in the last few decades, survival rates are constantly increasing.

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As if that were not depressing enough, the number of people Affected in developed countries continuously. In Germany, approximately 17,000 people per year are diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, as many die each year from cancer. According to the European gastroenterology Federation (UEG) is an increase in the number of deaths between 1990 and 2016, by five percent.

For the increase of diseases in the industrialised countries, experts make our modern life style is responsible.

Risk factors for pancreatic cancer

Life style: Smoking, Overweight, fat and meat – rich diet, excessive alcohol consumption are risk factors for cancer of the pancreas. The connection is not quite so clear as in the case of Smoking and lung cancer. Conversely, you should avoid alcohol and nicotine and a balanced diet, somewhat after the model of the Mediterranean diet.

  • As you change your diet accordingly, you can find here.

Inflammation: the influence of a chronic pancreas inflammation on the risk for pancreatic cancer.

Diabetes: The sugar disease is not a direct precursor of pancreatic cancer, such as polyps for colorectal cancer. But often, an Diabetes the diagnosis of cancer is preceded by a short. In an Interview with the world Volker ellenrieder, Director of the clinic for gastroenterology and endocrinology of the University of Göttingen medical center said that Diabetes could perhaps even be an early detection feature. You have found: If pancreas cancer is diagnosed in a patient with mid-50’s, then he got a few years before the diagnosis of Diabetes.

Predisposition: Genetic factors play a role, especially in hereditary forms of chronic pancreatitis. One to two close relatives suffering from a carcinoma of the pancreas, makes a medical advice sense.

The lack of early detection: A type of risk factor is also the facts that there are no early detection methods for pancreatic cancer, unlike in breast or colorectal cancer. Here, the research will in future be relying on blood tests (“liquid biopsy”). But so far, no approach is fully developed in such a way that in the blood is a reliable early cancer detection.

Symptoms of pancreatic cancer

In the early stages of the disease, caused pancreatic cancer with no or only nonspecific symptoms such as loss of appetite or a feeling of pressure in the upper abdomen, the other causes of can. Also persistent back pain, due to tension or poor posture, can a note be.

Significant symptoms such as severe pain, significant weight loss, or jaundice occur only when the disease is already more advanced.

Diagnosis of pancreatic cancer

Doctors discover a malignant Tumor is usually late, and often by chance in another investigation of the abdominal cavity.

In the case of suspicion on a carcinoma of the pancreas leads to the in-house doctor, first for a physical examination with an ultrasound of the abdomen .

For further investigations such as a computed tomography and endoscopic examination shall pay to the GP to an appropriate specialist, if necessary to a cancer centre.

A biopsy, which is the case for many other types of cancer, the diagnosis ensures, in the case of pancreatic cancer is not useful. Because a tissue sample from the pancreas is difficult and not without risk.

Therapy for pancreatic cancer

If the investigations suggest a carcinoma of the pancreas and the Tumor hasn’t spread, rates of the Doctors, under certain circumstances, an immediate Operation at a certified pancreatic cancer center.


The Tumor is detected early, that an Operation is out of the question, is there a Chance for complete healing. After the Operation a supportive chemotherapy for six months almost always. Sometimes the Operation is advanced to chemotherapy turned out a Tumor. After the removal of the pancreas, the Patient must replace the vital production of enzymes and hormones (such as Insulin) and by drugs.


For most patients, the disease in the diagnosis is so far advanced that the Tumor can not be surgery. He is then to grow into surrounding tissue or has already formed metastases. The standard treatment is chemotherapy with the aim to extend survival time and improve the quality of life.

Personalized Cancer Therapy

Pancreatic cancer is not often speaks to the Standard chemotherapy. Until this is clear, it takes valuable time. This Dilemma is a precision to the respective Tumor-tailored therapy can help. Due to the genetic fingerprint of the cancer, the oncologist to promising compounds, and such not apply, to the cancer anyway will not respond.

Experimental Therapies

In the pancreatic cancer specialized centers of new therapeutic approaches in the context of studies. Certain new drugs may complement chemotherapy or non-success in patients with the usual cell poisons strike. Patients can participate in such studies, if they are suitable with your condition.

The immune therapy, on of the great hopes for cancer currently, the rest failed so far in pancreatic cancer. This is because, unlike with most other types of cancer, the immune system does not recognize the pancreatic cancer. The research must find out how an immune response can be induced.

Quality of life up to the last

Important for the quality of life of patients with poor prognosis is a good palliative medical support. This includes the investigation of complaints that are associated with the Tumor, but also the support of the family, social and psychological Situation of the patients and their families. In addition to the important and often necessary treatment of pain but also takes into consideration aspects such as diet and exercise.

Prevention with limited possibilities

Except for the advice of a General healthy lifestyle, the Oncology has no specific preventive measures. No Smoking, little alcohol and a diet that prevents Diabetes is much more the Individual has in Hand, in order to protect the pancreas against cancer.