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    8 Questions to Ask about the Early Warning Signs of Pancreatic Cancer

    Pancreatic cancer is a disease in which cancerous cells form in the tissues of the pancreas. One in four survive after a year after being diagnosed, while just five percent survive five years after being diagnosed. Some of the early warning signs of pancreatic cancer include: a sudden diagnosis of diabetes; jaundice (the yellowing of the eyes and/or skin;) itchy skin, palms, and/or soles of the feet; lack of appetite; changes in taste; abdominal pain; enlarged gall bladder; pale, floating, smelly stools; dark, tarry stools; and sudden, unexplained weight loss. Experiencing the symptoms of pancreatic cancer can be a scary and life-threatening situation. The following eight questions can prepare patients to recognize early warning signs of pancreatic cancer.

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    Do my stools look healthy?
    Pancreatic cancer causes stools to become pale and foul-smelling, and they're also more likely to float. That's because pancreatic tumors can block enzymes that the body relies on for digestion.
    Why would my itchy hands be an early sign of pancreatic cancer?
    Itchy hands and palms are early signs of jaundice, and jaundice is a symptom of pancreatic cancer. Most people associate jaundice with a yellowing of the skin, but it can be caused when pancreatic cancer tumors block the organ's bile duct. You may notice your itchy hands before your skin tone changes.
    Is my stomach pain an early sign of pancreatic cancer?
    Some types of abdominal pain might indicate pancreatic cancer. Generally, you should talk to your doctor if your cramps are radiating toward your back. Also, abdominal pain caused by pancreatic cancer tends to be more constant as opposed to sharp or stabbing.
    Should I worry about the soles of my feet itching?
    If the soles of your feet are itchy, then that could be an early sign of pancreatic cancer in the same way that itchy hands would be. However, numerous health conditions can cause your feet to itch.
    Is my lack of appetite concerning?
    The loss of appetite is a common early symptom of many forms of cancer. Always schedule a trip to the doctor's office if you feel you're undergoing significant, unexplained changes regarding how much or how little you eat.
    Could my diabetic symptoms indicate pancreatic cancer?
    The sudden onset of diabetes indicates a failing of the pancreas, and the cause could be pancreatic cancer. Talk do your doctor if you develop signs of diabetes such as excessive hunger or thirst.
    Is my rapid weight loss a concern?
    Rapid weight loss is generally not a good thing. People with pancreatic cancer tend to suddenly lose weight because a lack of digestive enzymes from the pancreas causes food to pass through the body very quickly.
    Should I worry about jaundice?
    You should see your doctor immediately if you're experiencing a yellowing of the skin, as this could be a sign of either pancreatic cancer, liver damage, kidney damage or other ailments.