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Pancreatic carcinoma

  • Definition

    Pancreatic carcinoma is cancer of the pancreas.

    Alternative Names

    Pancreatic cancer; Cancer - pancreas

    Causes, incidence, and risk factors

    The pancreas is a large organ that is found behind the stomach. It makes and releases enzymes that help the body absorb foods, especially fats. Hormones called insulin and glucagon are also made in the pancreas. These hormones help your body control blood sugar levels.

    The exact cause is unknown, but pancreatic cancer is more common in smokers and people who are obese. Pancreatic cancer is slightly more common in women than in men. The risk increases with age.

    A small number of cases are related to genetic syndromes that are passed down through families.