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WPCC Key Messages

The World Pancreatic Cancer Coalition (WPCC) created the following evidence-based public statements to bring consistency to how WPCC members share information about the disease, support, treatment and more. Each statement is supported by the latest guidelines and/or published research, as referenced below.


Clinical Trials

Key message:  The World Pancreatic Cancer Coalition strongly recommends that everyone diagnosed with pancreatic cancer is given the opportunity to take part in a clinical trial.

Evidence: Pancreatic cancer patients who participate in clinical research have better outcomes. Clinical trials can advance research and improve treatment options

Cancer Net: About Clinical Trials
https://www.cancer.net/research-and-advocacy/clinical-trials/about-clinical-trials

FDA Clinical Research vs. Medical Treatment
https://www.fda.gov/patients/clinical-trials-what-patients-need-know/clinical-research-versus-medical-treatment

National Institute of Health (NIH): NIH Clinical Research Trials and You
https://www.nih.gov/health-information/nih-clinical-research-trials-you/basics#8

Pancreatic Cancer Trials and Accrual in the United States
https://ascopubs.org/doi/full/10.1200/jco.2013.49.4823

NIH: Clinical Research Trials and You – Why Should I Participate in a Clinical Trial?
https://www.nih.gov/health-information/nih-clinical-research-trials-you/why-should-i-participate-clinical-trial

NCCN Guidelines: Pancreatic Adenocarcinoma
https://jnccn.org/abstract/journals/jnccn/8/9/article-p972.pdf

Pancreatic cancer: Survival in clinical trials versus the real world
https://meetinglibrary.asco.org/record/120468/video

Patient and caregiver awareness of pancreatic cancer treatments and clinical trials
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4783733/#r10

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Diet and Nutrition

Key message: The World Pancreatic Cancer Coalition recommends that everyone diagnosed with pancreatic cancer has their nutritional needs assessed by someone with nutritional expertise, is offered information about diet and nutrition, and has access to pancreatic enzymes.

Evidence: Nutritional care, including supplemental pancreatic enzymes, improves pancreatic cancer patient outcomes and is critical for quality of life.

Nutritional intervention and quality of life in adult oncology patients
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17368656

Enzyme replacement therapy for pancreatic insufficiency: present and future
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3132852/

Pancreatic Exocrine Insufficiency in Patients with Pancreatic or Periampullary Cancer: A Systematic Review
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26495777

Diagnosing exocrine pancreatic insufficiency after surgery: when and which patients to treat
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2798170/

Pancreatic enzyme replacement therapy (PERT) for malabsorption in patients with metastatic pancreatic cancer
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25164613

Pancreatic exocrine insufficiency following pancreatic resection
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26145836

Weight stabilization is associated with improved survival duration and quality of life in unresectable pancreatic cancer
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15030964

Enzyme replacement improves survival among patients with pancreatic cancer: Results of a population-based study
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30385188

Pancreas exocrine replacement therapy is associated with increased survival following pancreatoduodenectomy for periampullary malignancy
https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1365182X17308006

Enzyme replacement improves survival among patients with pancreatic cancer: Results of a population-based study
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30385188

Impact of the treatment of pancreatic exocrine insufficiency on survival of patients with unresectable pancreatic cancer: a retrospective analysis
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5935964/pdf/12885_2018_Article_4439.pdf

Prevalence of symptomatic pancreatic exocrine insufficiency in patients with pancreatic malignancy intervention may improve survival
http://cancer-research-frontiers.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/CRF-2016-2-352.pdf

The effectiveness of pancreatic enzyme replacement therapy for malabsorption
in advanced pancreatic cancer, a pilot study
https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/pdf/10.1177/1178224218825270

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Patient Support

Key message: The World Pancreatic Cancer Coalition recommends that all patients and their family and caregivers are provided information about where to access support.

Evidence: Support for pancreatic cancer patients improves quality of life and overall well-being, yet patients report high levels of unmet supportive care needs.

Importance of social support in cancer patients
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23098436

Patients with cancer and family caregivers: management of symptoms caused by cancer or cancer therapy at home
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3767444/

Pancreatic Cancer UK Patient Survey, Oxford Brookes University and the Picker Institute, 2018
https://www.pancreaticcancer.org.uk/research/about-our-research/our-research-projects/research-for-patient-benefit/understanding-the-support-needs-of-people-affected-by-pancreatic-cancer

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Symptom Management and Supportive Care Needs

Key message: The World Pancreatic Cancer Coalition recommends that pancreatic cancer patients have their symptom management and supportive care needs addressed at all stages of treatment.

Evidence: Access to healthcare professionals who focus on symptom management and supportive care improves outcomes and is critical for quality of life.

Pain services and palliative medicine – an integrated approach to pain management in the cancer patient

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4616727/

Cancer pain relief and palliative care. Report of a WHO Expert Committee

https://apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/handle/10665/39524/WHO_TRS_804.pdf;jsessionid=A3A3A0C74F94C4E4405E9A125669217F?sequence=1

Randomized trial of early integrated palliative and oncology care

https://meetinglibrary.asco.org/record/136346/abstract

Determinants and prognostic value of quality of life in patients with pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma

https://www.ejcancer.com/article/S0959-8049(17)31512-5/fulltext

Depression and pancreatic cancer

https://www.ejcancer.com/article/S0959-8049(17)31512-5/fulltext

Integration of Palliative Care into Standard Oncology Care: American Society of Clinical Oncology Clinical Practice Guideline Update

https://ascopubs.org/doi/full/10.1200/JCO.2016.70.1474

NIH Panel: Treatment of Cancer Pain, Depression, & Fatigue Needs More Attention

https://journals.lww.com/oncology-times/Fulltext/2002/09000/NIH_Panel__Treatment_of_Cancer_Pain%2c_Depression%2c__.1.aspx

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High-Risk Individuals

Key message: The World Pancreatic Cancer Coalition recommends increased awareness of family history and access to genetic counselling to assess individual risk, as well as testing for those who are eligible.

Evidence: People with two or more first-degree relatives who have had pancreatic cancer, a first-degree relative who developed pancreatic cancer before the age of 50, or an inherited genetic syndrome associated with pancreatic cancer may have an increased risk of developing pancreatic cancer.

Importance of Age of Onset in Pancreatic Cancer Kindreds

https://academic.oup.com/jnci/article/102/2/119/920769

International Cancer of the Pancreas Screening (CAPS) Consortium summit on the management of patients with increased risk for familial pancreatic cancer

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3585492/

Familial Pancreatic Cancer

https://www.cancer.net/cancer-types/familial-pancreatic-cancer

Hereditary pancreatic cancer: related syndromes and clinical perspective

https://hccpjournal.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s13053-017-0069-6

Increased risk of incident pancreatic cancer among first-degree relatives of patients with familial pancreatic cancer

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11297271

Risk of Different Cancers Among First-degree Relatives of Pancreatic Cancer Patients: Influence of Probands’ Susceptibility Gene Mutation Status

https://europepmc.org/articles/pmc6410948

Pancreatic cancer in adults: diagnosis and management

https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ng85/chapter/Recommendations

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Pancreatic Cancer Symptoms

Key message: The World Pancreatic Cancer Coalition recommends increased awareness of pancreatic cancer and the following symptoms that people may experience:

  • Abdominal and mid-back pain
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Yellow skin or eyes
  • Changes in stool
  • New-onset diabetes
  • Digestive problems
  • Loss of appetite
  • Mood change

Evidence: Pancreatic cancer often doesn’t cause any signs or symptoms in the early stages, and symptoms can be vague.

Detecting early pancreatic cancer: problems and prospects

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17674956

Understanding symptom appraisal and help-seeking in people with symptoms suggestive of pancreatic cancer: a qualitative study

https://bmjopen.bmj.com/content/7/9/e015682

“It can’t be very important because it comes and goes”—patients’ accounts of intermittent symptoms preceding a pancreatic cancer diagnosis: a qualitative study

https://bmjopen.bmj.com/content/4/2/e004215

A case–control study comparing the incidence of early symptoms in pancreatic and biliary tract cancer

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4244441/

The risk of pancreatic cancer in symptomatic patients in primary care: a large case–control study using electronic records

https://www.nature.com/articles/bjc2012190

Early Detection of Pancreatic Cancer: The Role of Depression and Anxiety as a Precursor for Disease

https://journals.lww.com/pancreasjournal/Fulltext/2018/04000/Early_Detection_of_Pancreatic_Cancer__The_Role_of.1.aspx

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Pancreatic Cancer Risks

Key message: The World Pancreatic Cancer Coalition recommends increased awareness of the following pancreatic cancer risks:

  • Inherited genetic mutations
  • Family history of pancreatic cancer
  • Family history of other cancers
  • Diabetes
  • Pancreatitis (chronic and hereditary)
  • Smoking
  • Obesity
  • Race (ethnicity)
  • Age
  • Diet

Evidence: Research studies have identified the above as risk factors that may increase the likelihood that someone will develop pancreatic cancer.

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