Our COVID-19 safety protocols include universal screening, mandatory use of masks, physical distancing, and a strict no-visitor policy with exceptions only for medical necessity and pediatric patients under 18. To learn more about what we are doing to keep everyone safe during an in-office visit, click here.
Pancreatic Cancer Q&A with Dr. Kim
What is pancreatic cancer?
Pancreatic cancer is a disease in which cancerous cells form in the tissues of the pancreas, the organ that aids in digestion and helps to manage blood sugar. Pancreatic cancer can spread silently with no symptoms until the cancer is well advanced.
How common is pancreatic cancer?
Pancreatic cancer is the 10th most common cancer in the U.S. and the fourth deadliest—the highest mortality rate of all major cancers. By 2030, it is expected to become the second leading cause of cancer-related death in the country. 93 percent of pancreatic cancer patients die within five years of diagnosis. According to the American Cancer Society, one in 63 men and one in 65 women have a lifetime risk for developing pancreatic cancer.
What are the signs and symptoms of pancreatic cancer?
How is pancreatic cancer diagnosed?
Patients who are suspected of having pancreatic cancer may undergo imaging tests, an endoscopy, a biopsy, and blood tests to determine the diagnosis and the extent or stage of the disease.
How is pancreatic cancer treated?
Treatment may include some combination of surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy. If the cancer is advanced, chemotherapy may be used to control growth and prolong survival.
“Raising awareness is one of the most important things we can do to save lives,” says Dr. Kim. He adds, “The more people know, the more likely they are to pay attention to risks and the quicker they are to identify symptoms - all things that give them a better chance at survival and us a better chance to successfully treat them.”
Joseph J. Kim, MD is a member of Summit Medical Group's General Surgery team who specializes in Complex Surgical Oncology. Dr. Kim’s areas of expertise include tumors of the pancreas, liver, gallbladder and biliary system, esophagus, stomach, small intestine, colon, and rectum. He also has expertise in treating skin cancers and sarcomas, soft tissue tumors of the chest, abdomen, retroperitoneum, and extremities.