Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

Researchers have identified a series of symptoms associated with pancreatic cancer, including two previously unrecognised symptoms – feeling thirsty and having dark urine – in a study presented today (Monday, 8th Jan) at the NCRI Festival.

Researchers have identified a series of symptoms associated with pancreatic cancer, including two previously unrecognised symptoms – feeling thirsty and having dark urine – in a study presented Monday 8th NOvember at the NCRI (National Cancer Research Institute) Festival.

The study has confirmed a further 21 signs of pancreatic cancer and shown that patients often have some symptoms of the disease up to a year before their cancers are diagnosed, and other alarming symptoms three months before diagnosis.

The researchers hope their findings could improve survival by helping GPs diagnose the disease earlier, especially when patients present with several seemingly non-specific symptoms.

Pancreatic cancer has the lowest survival among all common cancers, with five-year survival around 7% in the UK. Unfortunately, most people with pancreatic cancer are diagnosed at a late stage.

Researchers want to better understand the early signs of pancreatic cancer because if patients and GPs are more aware of symptoms, they could be diagnosed earlier when their chance of survival is better.

The research was presented by Dr Weiqi Liao, a data scientist at the Nuffield Department of Primary Care Health Sciences, University of Oxford, UK. He and his colleagues looked at data from 24,236 patients who were diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in England between 2000 and 2017 using a large electronic database (QResearch). The researchers looked at patients’ symptoms at different time points before they were diagnosed with cancer and compared them to other patients’ symptoms who were not diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.

Read the full story here.

Sign-up for our newsletters

Contact our communications team

Our research media coverage

Our COVID-19 media coverage

 

Opinions expressed are those of the authors and not of Oxford University. Readers' comments will be moderated - see our guidelines for further information.