Pancreatic Cancer

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The pancreas is a part of the endocrine system, and is located in the abdominal cavity surrounded by the liver, gallbladder, spleen, and stomach. The pancreas processes both exocrine and endocrine function. The exocrine function consists of the secretion of digestive enzymes into the duodenum through ducts. The enzymes digest starches and fats. The endocrine functions are a cluster of cells called the islets of Langerhans and only make up 2% of the pancreatic tissue. The islets of Langerhans is made up of three cells, alpha, beta, and delta. There function is to secrete hormones and paracrine products. The most important hormones secreted are insulin, glucagon, and somatostatin. Alpha cells secrete glucagon, which increase…show more content…
Jaundice occurs when there is an increased amount of bilirubin in the blood, this occurs with liver involvement. The liver is the site of bilirubin breakdown and elimination into the stool. When the liver is affected by cancer it cannot excrete bilirubin effectively. A new diagnosis of Diabetes Militias can occur, due to the impaired function of the pancreas to secrete important hormones that control blood glucose. Splenomegaly is caused by blood flow backing up into the spleen, caused by compression of the portal vein by the tumor. Hepatomegaly is caused by tumor growth on the liver. Key Nursing assessment Assess for pain given the rate of metastasize cancer could affect many organ and become very pain full. Assess the presents of Jaundice. If Jaundice is present it gives a good indicator that the cancer has spread to gallbladder and liver. Fatigue is common among these patients. You will need a consult from PT, to assess their needs for assistance with mobility, ADL. Talk with patient about support system. Only 3% of individual’s diagnosed with pancreatic cancer live past 5 years. Most patient diagnosed pass away within the first year. Risk Factors The cause of pancreatic cancer is unknown, patient at risk are those between the age of 60 to 80 years old and with a history of smoking. Other factors for development of pancreatic cancer are Diabetes mellitus, chronic pancreatitis,
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