Monday, November 10, 2008

November is Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month

Please, if you are thinking of giving to a charity this holiday season, I would ask you to consider including the Lustgarten Foundation for Pancreatic Cancer Research ( on your list. They raise funds to support independent, non-government funded research into the causes and a potential cure for pancreatic cancer.

Pancreatic cancer is the 4th leading cause of cancer deaths in the United States. According to the American Cancer Society (ACS), in 2008 an anticipated 37,680 Americans will be diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, and 34,290 will die from the disease. For all stages of pancreatic cancer combined, the overall survival rate is less than 5%. For patients with advanced (metastatic) disease, the overall survival rate is less than 1% at 5 years. Most patients with advanced disease die within a year; average life expectancy is 6 to 9 months. Unless surgically removed in its earliest (localized) stages, there is no cure. Less than 20% of all cases are found in a localized stage.

The disease is highly aggressive and resistive to standard cancer treatments. Despite the high mortality rate associated with pancreatic cancer, its etiology is poorly understood. No tumor-specific markers exist for pancreatic cancer.
Pancreatic Cancer Treatment (PDQ®) from The National Cancer Institute

Let's increase funding for and awareness of this disease. I've written letters to editors of local papers in support of The National Plan to Advance Pancreatic Cancer Research Act (H.R. 7045). Would you consider doing the same?


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