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Experience and perspectives on surgery for stage IV Pancreatic Cancer.


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I am diagnosed with stage 4 Acinar Carcinom with the tumor at the tail of the pancreas w/metastasis to the liver. I am very interested in experience and perspectives on surgery of stage 4 patients, understanding that it is a complicated question where each case might be different. I am currently being treated with FOLFIRINOX, and the treatment has so fare been very effective with aprox 50% reduction after four cycles.

I have been in contact with experts in Europe, USA and Asia. The opinion seems to be diverse among the experts. I have received some very positive signals that surgery is possible and most likely beneficial. But also some more skeptical stating that it statistically has not proved to prolong life or increase life quality. Some also seem to be concerned that surgery could spread the cancer more, but I don’t understand that since I already have metastasis and therefor already is in the bloodstream.

My perspective as of now is that cleaning out as much as possible of the cancer must be a good thing as long as I am healthy enough to recover from surgery. Understanding that there might be invisible micro metastasis that you can’t remove by surgery, I would believe that removing the main tumor with reduce the spread of metastasis?

I would be very interested to hear about experience with stage 4 surgery, or from others who have perspectives or knowledge about this treatment.

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PCUK Nurse Jeni

Hello Desso,

Thank you for your post on the forum.

I will respond via email directly.

Kind regards,


Jeni Jones

Pancreatic Cancer Specialist Nurse

Support Team

Pancreatic Cancer UK

email: support@pancreaticcancer.org.uk

support line: 0808 801 0707

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  • 3 years later...

Dear Desso, just read your post and it concerns me a lot. May I ask about the outcome since your post is from three years ago. Most surgeons would not perform surgery for Stage IV since statistically it does not improve survival. But only statistically. I am pretty sure that it is worth it even for metastatic cancer and it most certainly prolongs survival. Did you have your operation performed? My father is currently undergoing chemo treatment in order to release the mesenteric artery so that tumor can be safely removed.

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