Pancreatic Tumor Treatment

What is Pancreatic Tumor Treatment?

Tumor treatment depends on the type of tumor, the stage of the tumor, age, health status, and additional personal characteristics. There is no single treatment for tumor, and pancreatic tumor is usually only curable when found in its earliest stages. Surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy are the most common treatment types. Treatment seeks to remove the tumor and or relieve painful symptom that the tumor is causing.


Surgery may be used to remove all part of the pancreas. If a tumor has not metastasized, it is possible to completely cure a patient by surgically removing the tumor from the body.   After the disease has spread, however, it is nearly impossible to remove the entire tumor. After the disease has spread, however, it is nearly impossible to remove all of the tumor cells. There are three main procedure used to remove the entire tumor:

Whipple procedure

The pancreas head and sometimes the entire organ, is removed along with a portion of the stomach, duodenum, lymph nodes, and other tissue.

    • Distal pancreatectomy

The pancreas tail is removed, and sometimes part of the body, along with the spleen. This procedure is usually used to treat islet cell or neuroendocrine tumors.

    • Total pancreatectomy

The entire pancreas and spleen are removed. Although people can live without a pancreas, diabetes often results because the body no longer produces insulin cells.


Chemotherapy target any rapidly dividing cells, but normal cells can usually recover from any chemical-induced damage while tumor cells cannot. Other than that, this treatment utilized chemicals that interfere with the cell division process-damaging proteins or DNA so that tumor cells will commit suicide. It used to treat tumor that has spread or metastasized because the medicines travel throughout the entire body. However, there are still having side effects such as hair loss, nausea, fatigue and vomiting.


Radiation treatment also known as radiotherapy, destroy the tumor by focusing high energy rays on the tumor cells. Radiotherapy utilized high energy gamma-rays that are emitted from metals such as radium or high-energy x-ray that are created in a special machine. Radiotherapy can be used as a standalone treatment to shrink a tumor or destroy tumor cells and it is also used in combination with other tumor treatment. Usually radiation therapy for pancreatic tumor is given 5 days a week for 5 to 6 weeks. The side effects of this treatment are mild skin changes resembling sunburn, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and fatigue.



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