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What're the risk factors for pancreatic cancer?

The risk of developing cancer of the pancreas is usually low before the age of 40, but the risk subsequently increases sharply, with most people diagnosed between their sixties and eighties. Risk factors for the development of this disease include environmental factors, medical/surgical factors, genetic factors, and occupational exposures. The presence of a risk

factor does not necessarily mean that an individual will develop cancer, nor does the absence of risk factors mean that an individual will not develop cancer.

Age: The incidence of pancreatic cancer is relatively low in individuals up to age 50, after which it increases significantly. The age group 65 - 79 has the highest incidence of cancer of the pancreas.
Smoking: Smokers develop pancreatic cancer more than twice as often as nonsmokers.

Diet: Frequency of pancreatic cancer may be associated with high intakes of meat and fat.

Medical factors: Pancreatic cancer is more common among individuals with histories of the following conditions: cirrhosis (a chronic liver disease), chronic pancreatitis, diabetes and a history of surgery to the upper digestive tract.

Environmental factors: Long-term exposure to certain chemicals, such as gasoline and related compounds, as well as certain insecticides, may increase the risk of developing cancer of the pancreas.

Genetic predisposition: Possibly 3% of cases of pancreatic cancer are related to genetic disorders.

More information on pancreatic cancer

What is pancreatic cancer? - Pancreatic cancer is an abnormal, uncontrolled growth of cells in the pancreas, which is a digestive gland located behind the stomach.
What causes pancreatic cancer? - Pancreatic cancers can arise from both the exocrine and endocrine portions of the pancreas. Smoking is regarded as the single greatest risk factor for pancreatic cancer.
What're the risk factors for pancreatic cancer? - Risk factors including smoking and diets rich in red meat and fat increase the susceptibility to this particular cancer.
What're the symptoms of pancreatic cancer? - Abdominal pain is generally a sign that the pancreatic cancer has spread to the surrounding area and the tumor is pressing down on the nerves.
How is pancreatic cancer diagnosed? - The first step in diagnosing pancreatic cancer is a thorough medical history and a complete physical examination.
What's the treatment for pancreatic cancer? - The main treatments for pancreatic cancer are surgery, radiation therapy and chemotherapy. Chemotherapy uses drugs to kill cancer cells.
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