Founded in 1999, the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network focused on creating a nationwide network for pancreatic cancer patients in America. In 2016, several member nations came together to build World Pancreatic Cancer Coalition. The reason behind it was to spread awareness regarding the fatal disease and seek support for pancreatic cancer survivors.
Globally, medical professionals, cancer research organizations, and medical institutions observe the month of November as “Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month”. On November 18, the medical fraternity unites to shine a light on pancreatic cancer, its symptoms, and risk factors.
Why is there a Need for Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month in India?
According to ICMR (Indian Council of Medical Research), pancreatic cancer is the 12th most common cancer and 4th leading cause of cancer-related deaths in India. Every 0.5-2.4 per 100,000 men and 0.2-1.8 per 100,000 women are diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in India. Although the incidence of the disease is low in India, the survival rates are abysmally low.
The cause of low survival rates partially lies in the fact that pancreatic cancer is a silent killer. Pancreatic cancer rarely shows any symptoms in the early stages, or even it does; patients confuse them as common digestive issues. And when patients realize there is something wrong, cancer has metastasized. So, spreading awareness regarding the disease and helping pancreatic cancer patients is so crucial.
Pancreatic Cancer: What can you do to make a Difference?
It is okay if you are not a medical professional. As a responsible citizen of India with a duty towards fellow Indians, you can raise awareness for pancreatic cancer. It is a noble way of helping others avoid a fatal disease. Here’s how you can make a difference:
1. Awareness starts with You
Early detection and immediate medical intervention can save the lives of pancreatic cancer patients. So, it is essential to schedule a routine examination with a gastrointestinal doctor. The surgical gastroenterologist will conduct a physical to look for the tell-tale signs of pancreatic cancer and other GI disorders. They may recommend a few tests such as a CT scan, endoscopic ultrasound, and a biopsy to confirm the presence of a pancreatic tumor.
2. A Second Opinion is a Must
Are you diagnosed with pancreatic cancer? Or, do you know someone who is diagnosed with the tumor? Always, always, always seek a second opinion. Consult a pancreatic cancer specialist who has experience in treating several pancreatic cancer patients with positive clinical outcomes. When it comes to cancer treatment, it is best to get expert opinions and make informed decisions. fenbendazole powder