Pancreatic cancer is a disease more common in the elderly people within society. The majority of those diagnosed with this form of cancer are over the age of 71 and the diagnosis of those less than 40 years of age are rare and uncommon.
What are the forms of pancreatic cancer?
Pancreatic cancer is the development of cancerous (abnormal) tissue within the pancreatic gland. This occurs due to a runaway process of cell division that is rapid and uncontrolled. In terms of the tissue masses produced by pancreatic cancer, there are two different tumor types, further detailed below.
· Originate in the cells that produce hormones
· Account for below 5% of diagnosed pancreatic cancers
· Originate within the area of the pancreas that produces pancreatic juice ( an enzyme containing substance that increases the rate of digestion)
· Account for approximately 95% of cases in terms of pancreatic cancer diagnosis
What are the risk factors associated with pancreatic cancer?
Neither sex is particularly more vulnerable than the other when it comes to cancer of the pancreas. The statistics stand at a 1/79 chance for women and a 1/77 chance for men. This is not the case with all forms for cancer, such as lung, breast and prostate. Below you can a list of the risk factors that are associated with the development of pancreatic cancer.
Weight and BMI – Being overweight or obese is an increasing risk factor for most health and cancer illnesses. However, as the pancreas in situated behind the stomach, the effect of excess fat can have be even more dangerous than usual. It is estimated by the World Cancer Research fund that simply being of a healthy weight can reduce your risk of developing the disease by 15%.
Smoking – The usual trend of smoking increasing your risk of cancer development continues with the case of pancreatic cancer. However, those who smoke with a pipe or who smoke cigars are shown to be 50% more likely to develop pancreatic cancer than non-smokers. This is a staggering statistic, but luckily reducing your risk is as simple as making better lifestyle and habitual choices.
Dietary Factors – Another shocking statistic is that the consumption of one portion of processed, red meat per day can raise your chances of developing pancreatic cancer by approximately 19%. Processed red meats include bacon, sausages and some ready-made beef steaks.
History of Pancreatic Problems – Those diagnosed with diabetes or any other pancreas related illness are also at a higher risk of developing pancreatic cancer.