Diabetes and pancreatic cancer

Diabetes can be a sign of pancreatic cancer. It is a condition where your blood sugar level is too high. The pancreas helps control your blood sugar level, so pancreatic cancer and its treatment can cause long term problems. Here people who have pancreatic cancer talk about diabetes.
If you have pancreatic cancer you may get a diagnosis of diabetes first. Symptoms include:
  • Thirst
  • Needing to pee more often
  • Hunger
  • Feeling weak
  • Weight loss
  • Eyesight problems
Steve was very thirsty and his eyesight had gotten worse. His doctor prescribed injections of insulin.

Steve gave himself an injection of insulin before each meal. He had another injection before…

Age at interview 47

Gender Male

Age at diagnosis 47

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Carol’s diabetes was diagnosed at the same time as her pancreatic cancer. She started daily injections of insulin. Carol had surgery for the cancer. Later she saw an endocrinologist and found out that what was left of her pancreas was working again so she could stop her injections.

Carol attended a diabetic clinic where she had advice about diet. A nurse visited her at home to…

Age at interview 67

Gender Female

Age at diagnosis 65

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People with pancreatic cancer and diabetes may need to see a dietitian. A low calorie diet is usually whats recommended for diabetes. However, they might advise you to have a high calorie diet to regain weight lost due to cancer.

A consultant explains that people who have part of their pancreas removed are likely to develop…

Richard developed diabetes while he was having chemotherapy. He changed his diet and took a…

Age at interview 59

Gender Male

Age at diagnosis 58

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Your GP can usually help manage your diabetes, however Richard’s GP was concerned that his needs might be different from other diabetic patients because of the cancer.

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