Pancreatic cancer is the 11th most commonly diagnosed cancer in men and the 9th in women, but the 4th
leading cause of cancer death for both men and women in the United States.
• Pancreatic cancer is the only major cancer with a five-year relative survival rate in the single digits.
• Unlike many other cancers, the survival rate for the disease has not improved substantially since passage of
the National Cancer Act over 40 years ago. Since 1975, the five-year relative survival rate for pancreatic cancer
has moved from 2 percent to only 6 percent, while the overall five-year relative survival rate has moved from 49
percent to 68 percent
• It is estimated that in 2014, 46,420 Americans will be diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, and 39,590 will die
from the disease.1 Seventy-three percent of patients will die within the first year of diagnosis.
• Of all the racial/ethnic groups in the United States, African-Americans have the highest incidence rate of
pancreatic cancer, between 31 percent and 65 percent higher than the other groups.
• While overall cancer incidence and death rates are declining, the incidence and death rates for pancreatic
cancer have been increasing.1 The number of new pancreatic cancer cases in the United States has been
projected to increase by 55 percent between 2010 and 2030.
• Pancreatic cancer is projected to surpass breast and colorectal cancer to become the second leading cause of
cancer death in the United States by 2020.
Little is known about risk factors, and there are NO EARLY
Today, only a few risk factors for pancreatic cancer are known. More research is needed to understand their direct
relationship to the disease. Further complicating matters, there are no effective early detection methods available, and
most symptoms are vague and could be attributed to many different conditions.
• Symptoms include pain (usually abdominal or back pain), weight loss, jaundice (yellowing of the skin and eyes),
loss of appetite, nausea, changes in stool, and diabetes.
• The disease is often diagnosed late because of the location of the pancreas deep in the body, the absence of
definitive symptoms, and the lack of good early detection methods. More than half of patients are diagnosed
when they have advanced (metastatic) disease that has spread to other organs.1


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