Pancreatic cancer is the forth most common cause of the death from cancer in men and fifth for women, primarily occurring between 65-79 years of age. Nearly all pancreatic cancers are primarily pancreatic adenocarcinomas. Exercise, such as walking 4 hours or more weekly, may protect against this cancer. About 50-70% of patients have cancer in the head of pancreas, and 50% have in the body and tail. Patients who have cancer in head of pancreas often present with cholangitis, nausea, anorexia, weight loss, new-onset diabetes, light colored stools, dark urine, steatorrhea, jaundice, and pruritis. Those who have cancer in the body or tail of the pancreas present with vague abdominal pain, dyspepsia, nausea, intermittent diarrhoea, unexpected diabetes, and constant back pain.
Risk factors of pancreatic cancer
- History of diabetes mellitus
- Age – over 60 years
- Sex – males are more prone towards pancreatic cancer.
- Hereditary disorders such as familial pancreatic cancer, familial melanoma, colorectal cancer, hereditary pancreatitis
- Chronic pancreatitis
- Partial gastrectomy for peptic ulcer surgery
- Diet high in meat, cholesterol, and fried foods
- Diet low in vitamin C, fruits and vegetables
- Consumption of dietary nitrite from animal products, but not from drinking water, may increase risk
- Occupational exposure
Symptoms of carcinoma of head of pancreas
- There may be some discomfort in the abdomen but colicky pain is not a feature. Pain is relatively rare in carcinoma head of the pancreas
- When obstruction becomes severe, there is bile stasis. Fever with chills and rigor may occur
- As a result of slow developing obstruction at periampullary region. Jaundice is persistent, progressive, painless, pruritic.
- Clay colored stools are common and when mixed with blood it is called silvery stools.
- Significant loss of appetite
- Significant loss of weight
Symptoms of the carcinoma of body and tail of pancreas
- Severe pain radiating to the back
- Gross weight loss
- Anorexia, asthenia and generalized weakness
Differential diagnosis of pancreatic cancer
Carcinoma stomach – infiltrating the pancreas
Such mass may not be mobile. It does not move with respiration because it is fixed to pancreas.
The patient will have vomiting first followed by backache at a later date.
Carcinoma transverse colon
- Produces constipation and bleeding per rectum. Vertical mobility may be present.
- Right to left peristalsis may be present
Para-aortic lymph node mass may be due to:
- Intra-abdominal malignancies, lymphoma, testicular tumor, etc
USG – size of tumor: can detect a mass as 2 cm
Extent of tumor
Infilteration of portal vein
Lymph node enlargement
Cancer antigen CA 19-9: these are glycoprotiens which are elaborated by malignancies. It is a tumor marker of pancreas to monitor pancreatic carcinoma.
Homeopathic treatment for pancreatic cancer symptoms
Homeopathy is one of the most popular holistic systems of medicine. The selection of remedy is based upon the theory of individualization and symptoms similarity by using holistic approach. This is the only way through which a state of complete health can be regained by removing all the sign and symptoms from which the patient is suffering. The aim of homeopathy is not only to treat pancreatic cancer but to address its underlying cause and individual susceptibility. As far as therapeutic medication is concerned; several homeopathy medicines are available for pancreatic cancer symptoms treatment that can be selected on the basis of cause, location, sensation, modalities and extension of the complaints. For individualized remedy selection and treatment, the patient should consult a qualified homeopathic doctor in person. Some important remedies are given below for pancreatic cancer symptoms treatment:
- Arsenic Alb.
- Nitric Acid.
- Euphorbium. .
- Natrum Mur
- Aurum Ars
Allopathic treatment of pancreatic cancer-It Includes Chemotherapy, Radiation Therapy, immunotherapy and Surgery which, depend upon location and stage of cancer
Other natural and alternative modes of treatment for pancreatic cancer – It includes AyurvedIc medicine, Naturopathy with massage therapy, Meditation and Yoga, Acupuncture, Aloe Vera, Black co hash, Carctol, chaparral, Chiropractic, Echinacea, Essiac, Green tea, Gerson therapy, music therapy, Reiki, shiatsu, Traditional Chinese medicine, Visualization, Reflexology, Herbal medicine, Flower remedies, Aroma therapy etc in treatment of cancer.