Facts about the Pancreas and Pancreatic Cancer

The pancreas is a gland located deep in the abdomen, between the stomach and the spine. It makes enzymes that help digestion. It also makes hormones that control blood-sugar levels. Pancreatic cancer begins when abnormal cells in the pancreas grow and divide out of control and form a tumor.

  • Pancreatic cancer is diagnosed in more than 55,000 Americans each year, and the number continues to rise.

  • The state of Florida ranks second to California in the number of people diagnosed with pancreatic cancer each year.

  • Pancreatic cancer affects both men and women across all races and ethnicities. However, it can be more aggressive and lead to poorer prognosis in some racial and ethnic groups. The reasons for these observations are unclear.