Q:

What are some of the symptoms of pancreatic cancer?

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Quick Answer

Common symptoms of pancreatic cancer include dark urine, nausea and vomiting, weight loss, back or abdominal pain, and yellowish-tinted skin, as noted by WebMD. Symptoms of pancreatic cancer may also include enlarged lymph nodes in the neck, itching and light-colored stool.

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Full Answer

Symptoms for pancreatic cancer are often subtle and do not appear until the cancer has developed outside of the pancreas, as explained by WebMD. Most symptoms are related to the digestive and gastrointestinal systems. As the tumor grows, many patients experience bloating or swelling in the abdomen and a dull ache that radiates from the back to the upper abdomen. Pancreatic cancer also affects the stool, and some people may experience diarrhea or discolored stools that are pale or clay-colored.

Pancreatic cancer produces whole-body symptoms as the cancer progresses, according to WebMD. Patients may experience malaise, weight loss and a loss of appetite as the stomach swells and feels bloated. People with pancreatic cancer may also develop diabetes and experience elevated blood sugars as the tumor interferes with the pancreas' ability to function and produce insulin. People with pancreatic cancer can also produce excess insulin, which causes lightheadedness, fainting, sweating and anxiety as well as excessive thirst or urination.

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