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Pancreatic Cancer Types
Types of Pancreatic Cancer
As part of your diagnosis, we will determine what type of pancreatic cancer you have.
There are several types of pancreatic cancers, including:
- Adenocarcinoma of the pancreas: This is the most common pancreatic cancer, which occurs in the lining of the pancreatic duct.
- Adenosquamous carcinoma: This is a rare pancreatic cancer.
- Squamous cell carcinoma: This is another rare pancreatic cancer.
Pancreatic Tumors: Neuroendocrine Tumors
There are also tumors in the pancreas that are called endocrine tumors because they secrete hormones. They may be benign (noncancerous) or malignant (cancerous).
Neuroendocrine tumors in the pancreas include:
- Gastrinoma: A tumor in the pancreas or duodenum. It may occur as part of a hereditary endocrine syndrome. Gastrinomas secrete above average levels of gastrin, a hormone that stimulates the stomach to secrete acids and enzymes. Gastrinoma can cause peptic ulcers.
- Glucagonoma: A pancreatic tumor that secretes glucagon, a hormone that raises levels of glucose in the blood, leading to a rash.
- Insulinoma: A rare pancreatic tumor that secretes insulin, the hormone that lowers glucose levels in the blood. This is often a genetic condition that runs in families.
- VIPoma: A type of neuroendocrine pancreatic tumor that secretes vasoactive intestinal polypeptide (VIP). This leads to severe intermittent diarrhea that causes further problems, including dramatic potassium loss. Despite the name, there are rare instances where VIPomas secrete hormones other than VIP.
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