The Pancreas: What It Does and How Cancer Grows
The pancreas is located in the abdomen, behind the stomach. It secretes enzymes that aid in digestion and hormones that help regulate sugar levels. Cancer occurs when cells in the pancreas develop mutations in their DNA. These mutated cells can grow uncontrollably and form a tumor.
The most common form of pancreatic cancer (about 95 percent) begins in the cells that line the ducts of the pancreas. This is referred to as pancreatic adenocarcinoma or pancreatic exocrine cancer. It is rare (about 5 percent) that cancer can form in the hormone-producing cells of the pancreas, but it can happen. This type of cancer is called islet cell cancer or pancreatic endocrine cancer.
“A pancreatic cancer diagnosis can be devastating, not only for patients, but also for their families,” said pancreatic surgeon and surgical oncology specialist Wilbur Bowne, M.D., associate professor in the Department of Surgery at Drexel University College of Medicine. “Our team takes a multidisciplinary approach to treating diseases such as this and will work with the patient and his or her family to decide the best course of treatment depending on where the cancer is located in the pancreas and whether or not it has spread to other parts of the body.”
Join the Drexel Pancreatic Power Team
Do you want to raise funds to help pancreatic cancer research? You can do so on Saturday, November 9th by joining the Drexel Pancreatic Power team at the Purple Stride Philadelphia 2013. Drexel Cancer Care is a proud silver sponsor of this year’s event with Dr. Bowne leading the team as its captain.
Drexel Cancer Care
Drexel Cancer Care utilizes the latest medical breakthroughs to treat all forms of cancer, including pancreatic cancer. Our specialists are located centrally in Philadelphia, offering patients easy access to advanced cancer care, and are committed to providing patients with compassionate, comprehensive cancer treatment. Drexel Cancer Care also provides patients with access to numerous support groups. These groups are offered free of charge to patients, families and caregivers.