Pancreatic cancer is one of the leading causes of cancer death in the United States. Surgical resection of tumors is considered the only curative form of treatment and can occur only when tumors are diagnosed early. Currently, researchers are attempting to develop screening tests to detect pancreatic cancer while at an early stage. Until the tests are perfected, primary care providers need to be aware of the earliest symptoms of pancreatic cancer and know which tests will assist in diagnosing pancreatic cancer at an early stage. The purpose of this article is to educate primary care providers about the early symptoms of pancreatic cancer and appropriate diagnostics to order.
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