Types of pancreatic cancer can be described by where they are found in the pancreas and by the type of cell that they start from.
Cancer can occur in any part of the pancreas, but around 6 or 7 in every 10 pancreatic cancers (60–70%) start in the head of the pancreas.
There are several different types of pancreatic cancer. The most common type is ductal adenocarcinoma, which starts from cells in the lining of the pancreatic ducts. More than 9 out of 10 pancreatic cancers (95%) are ductal adenocarcinomas.
Cancer may develop at the ampulla of Vater, where the bile and pancreatic ducts join up and enter the small bowel (duodenum). This is called ampullary cancer.
The main symptoms of pancreatic cancer are:
- Pain or discomfort in your stomach. It can also spread to your back
- Weight loss
Other symptoms such as tiredness, loss of appetite and nausea amongst others may also be associated with pancreatic cancer.
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