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A Journal on Surgery

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Minerva Chirurgica 2015 April;70(2):97-106

language: English

Strategies to improve the outcome in locally advanced pancreatic cancer

Späth C. 1, Nitsche U. 1, Müller T. 1, Michalski C. 2, Erkan M. 3, Kong B. 1, Kleeff J. 1

1 Department of Surgery, Klinikum rechts der Isar, Technische Universität München, Munich, Germany;
2 Department of Surgery, University of Heidelberg, Heidelberg, Germany;
3 Department of Surgery, Koc University School of Medicine, Istanbul, Turkey


Pancreatic cancer is associated with the worst prognosis of all gastrointestinal malignancies. The major reasons for the dismal outcome are late diagnosis due to unspecific symptoms and aggressive tumor biology. Although highly effective chemotherapeutic options have emerged within the last decade, radical resection offers the only chance of cure. Only 10-20% of patients are resectable at presentation, and 30-40% present with borderline resectable or locally advanced/unresectable tumors. Even if resectable, the 5-year-survival rate after complete resections remains unsatisfactory, with less than 25%. This article gives an overview on current therapy standards as well as on new approaches especially for locally advanced tumors and outlines the importance of ongoing research to improve prognosis.

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