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Pancreatic Cancer: Treatments and Services

Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University in Atlanta, GA offers the latest pancreatic cancer treatments for pancreatic cancer patients (including gastrointestinal cancer patients) in Georgia and the Southeast.

There are often varieties of treatment options for those who have pancreatic cancer. Depending on the location and staging of the cancer, pancreatic cancer can be treated using surgery, radiation therapy, or chemotherapy. For some patients, a combination of treatment methods may be used.

Surgery for Pancreatic Cancer
During pancreatic cancer surgery, a surgeon may remove parts or all of the pancreas, depending on the location and stage of the cancer. Procedures include:

  • Whipple Procedure: The whipple procedure can be used when the cancer is in the head of the pancreas. In this procedure, the surgeon removes the head of the pancreas and parts of the bile ducts, small intestine, and stomach.
  • Distal Pancreatectomy: A distal pancreatectomy removes the body and tail of the pancreas in addition to the spleen.
  • Total Pancreatectomy: A total pancreatectomy removes the entire pancreas. In addition, a part of the small intestine, a portion of the stomach, the common bile duct, the gallbladder, the spleen, and nearby lymph nodes are also removed.

Radiation for Pancreatic Cancer
Radiation therapy for pancreatic cancer uses high energy x-rays to kill cancer cells. This radiation can occur from within or from outside the body (internal and external radiation).

Radiation therapy is a local treatment and treats the body only in the area where cancer is found. This kind of therapy can be used to destroy cancer cells that may remain after surgery, or it may be used to help treat pain and other symptoms.

Chemotherapy for Pancreatic Therapy
Chemotherapy for pancreatic cancer involves the use of different drugs to kill cancer.

A doctor usually gives chemotherapy medication by injection. The drugs then enter the bloodstream and travel throughout the body to treat the cancer.

Pancreatic Cancer Treatment and Surgery Questions and Appointments
Contact us for more information about our pancreatic cancer treatments, surgeries, procedures and programs.

Learn about Clinical Trials at Emory Winship Cancer Institute