10. Weight loss
Similar to most types of cancer, an advanced stage is associated with unplanned and sometimes aggressive weight loss that is often very difficult to reverse. Pancreatic cancer has various factors adding up to increase the likelihood of weight loss. It leads to gastrointestinal problems, including nutrient absorption problems, loss of appetite, and diarrhea. As it happens with other types of cancer, pancreatic cancer changes the metabolism and increases the energy expenditure because cancer cells are always robbing nutrients from the blood, leading to nutrient deficiencies in patients with a balanced diet.
Weight loss is an important part of cachexia, a wasting syndrome associated with almost all types of cancer. Along with low energy levels, low appetite, muscle loss, weakness and fatigue, there’s a progressive decay in patients with advanced pancreatic cancer, and sometimes the disease is diagnosed in this later stage when patients finally realize that something is wrong. Thus, keep an eye on the warning signs and symptoms, ask your doctor and do not delay your diagnosis.
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