The best potential outcomes for any cancer diagnosis are in cases when the disease is found, diagnosed and treated in its early stages. This is when a private oncologist has the opportunity to try the broadest and least invasive treatments to manage or remove the cancerous tissue entirely.
With pancreatic cancer, however, this can sometimes be more difficult, due to how the early stages of cancer can in many cases not cause any symptoms, which makes it more difficult to diagnose, with some symptoms that can be explained by other conditions.
However, here are some early potential signs of pancreatic cancer to be mindful of, particularly if they last for over a week.
Whilst the yellowing of the eyes is commonly associated with hepatitis or gallstones, it can also happen in pancreatic cancer when a tumour blocks the bile duct in your liver, causing a buildup of bilirubin.
These are commonly caused by cancers that start in the head of the pancreas, which means they can be caught and excised whilst they are still relatively small.
Similarly, if you have itchy skin or skin that has turned slightly yellow, it could also be a sign of pancreatic cancer.
It must be noted, however, that even if the cause is not pancreatic cancer, it is important to check to help treat the other potential causes such as hepatitis.
Changes To Excretions
As a result of the same bile duct blockage, an early sign of pancreatic cancer can be urine that is exceptionally dark in colour, resembling a dark brown, which is the result once again of a buildup of bilirubin.
As well as this, lighter, greasier stools and a general change in a person’s bowel movements can also be a sign of pancreatic cancer for many of the same reasons.
Rapid, Unexpected Weight Loss
Many cancers can press down on the stomach, liver and organs, leading to stomach pains and a general loss of appetite.