Pancreatic Cancer Symptoms in Men

Pancreatic cancer occurs in the pancreas, an organ which helps to regulate blood sugar levels and your digestive system. The pancreas is found deep in the abdomen, between the gallbladder and the liver. When the functions regulated by the pancreas are disrupted pancreatic cancer symptoms in men occur.

What are Pancreatic Cancer Symptoms in Men?

Pancreatic cancer symptoms in men could indicate any number of common illnesses, therefore making early detection difficult.  The main early pancreatic cancer symptoms in men include:

  • Pain – may be felt in the upper abdomen first then travel round to the back.  Lying down will make it worse, as will eating a big meal.  It will usually ease when sitting up and leaning forward.

 

  • Weight loss – unexplained loss of weight when neither diet is restricted nor exercise is increased can be a symptom.  As enzyme production is affected by pancreatic cancer then digestion will be affected and together with a reduced appetite and disrupted blood sugar levels will cause weight loss.

 

  • Jaundice –when the skin and the whites of the eyes turn a yellow shade jaundice is diagnosed.  This may occur when a tumour blocks the passage of a yellow substance known as bile resulting in it being absorbed by the blood.  This may also cause the patient to feel that their skin is itchy.

 

As the cancer progresses other symptoms may occur, they may be present at diagnosis or develop after diagnosis or not at all.  These additional symptoms include:

  • Diabetes – this occurs when the hormones required to absorb blood sugar become reduced.  Diabetes often leads to an excessive thirst, general weakness and lethargy and an increased need to urinate.  Although a diagnosis of diabetes does not necessarily lead to pancreatic cancer.

 

  • Bowel disturbances – whilst lots of illnesses may cause bowel problems, large, smelly, pale stools are the most indicative of pancreatic cancer.  This occurs when there is too much fat in the stools as the cancer will have affected the amount of fat absorbing enzymes that are being created.

 

  • Nausea with sickness – a combination of hormone imbalance and pressure from a tumour on various nearby organs may bring on feelings of nausea and the urge to be sick.

 

  • Fever and shivering – a large rise in temperature due to hormone imbalance may bring on feelings of extreme cold and result in the patient shivering.

Steps to Take if You Have Pancreatic Cancer Symptoms in Men

You should not delay making an appointment to speak to your doctor about your pancreatic cancer symptoms in men.  If you experience any delay in getting referred to a consultant by your NHS doctor it may be wise to consider private treatment as time is of the essence when dealing with pancreatic cancer.

Early detection of pancreatic cancer can greatly increase the chance of survival.  It is an unfortunate fact that survival rates from pancreatic cancer have not increased since the 1970’s and the rate at which patients survive for 5 years remains at 3%.

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