Today’s post is in honor of World Cancer Day. Over the last few decades, most forms of cancer have seen survival rates increase. For some forms of cancer, survival rates have increased substantially due to increased awareness of symptoms, better screening and increased funding for research into optimal forms of treatment.
For pancreatic cancer, survival rates have not increased substantially over the years. In fact, the latest figures show that the five year survival rate for ALL STAGES of pancreatic cancer is only 6%. For stage 1, it is estimated that five year survival is between 20 and 30%. Long term stage four survivors are few and far between. Sadly, most cases of PC are diagnosed at either stage 3 or stage 4. Pancreatic cancer has the lowest five year survival rates of any form of cancer. In 2013, there were over 45,000 cases of PC diagnosed, and over 38,000 deaths from PC.
Currently there is no way to detect PC in it’s earliest stages. Treatments are often aimed at keeping the patient comfortable rather than at curing the illness. Surgical resection offers the best chances of long term survival, but most patients are not candidates for surgical resection.
I would love to see Pancreatic Cancer receive the attention and funding that other cancers, such as breast cancer, have received. Please help spread the word about pancreatic cancer. Check out organizations such as the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network to learn more about this deadly form of cancer.
For further information on Pancreatic cancer, please see