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What is pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma? All about the disease that struck Gianluca Vialli

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What is pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma? It is one of the most common and aggressive pancreatic cancers.

Considered one of the most common and aggressive pancreatic cancers, pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma affects about 85% of patients with cancer localized in this organ. Let's see what the symptoms, risk factors and treatment are.

Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma: what is it?

Ductal adenocarcinoma of the pancreas, a disease that soccer coach Gianluca Vialli is battling, is the most common form of malignant pancreatic tumour. It is a cancer that affects both men and women, especially in the age group between 50 and 80 years. Unfortunately, it is a very aggressive cancer, but it should be noted that medicine has made great strides in recent years. This carcinoma, based on its location, presents different symptoms and obliges doctors to intervene with specific surgical interventions. Therefore, we cannot speak of a single type of operation or even of ailments common to all patients.

Generally, a person realizes he has pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma when the first symptoms appear: asthenia, loss of appetite, weight loss, onset of diabetes mellitus and pain in the upper abdomen and back. These annoyances, unfortunately, indicate that the disease is already at an advanced stage. It is also for this reason that, to date, the prognosis of survival is less than 5 years. There are several risk factors associated with the development of pancreatic cancer:

  • age greater than 60 years;
  • smoke;
  • alcohol abuse;
  • obesity and diabetes mellitus;
  • chronic pancreatitis;
  • inheritance of pancreatic tumors or syndromes that increase the risk of cancer;
  • other benign/borderline pancreatic neoplasms.
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Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma: cure and treatment

As already underlined, in the presence of ductal adenocarcinoma of the pancreas, not to be confused with the neuroendocrine one, doctors may decide to intervene with different treatments. In some cases, for example, the cancer can be treated with neoadjuvant chemotherapy before surgery to make it less aggressive.

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