Cancer of the pancreas may not give any or only very mild symptoms initially. That is why pancreas cancer is often advanced at the time it is diagnosed, since symptoms emerge only when the tumor has grown to a sufficient size. The most typical symptoms are weight loss, pain in the upper part of the abdomen and back, and icterus (a yellow tone of the skin and eye balls).
Pancreas cancer is treated surgically, with chemotherapy and with radiation therapy. The treatment plan is always individualized for each patient.
There is also a rare form of pancreas cancer called pancreatic islet cell tumor. Only about 3% of pancreas cancers are islet cell tumors and this tumor is very different from the common form of pancreas cancer. Islet cell tumors can be treated not only surgically and with chemotherapy but also with hormonal treatment.