[The epidemiology of pancreatic cancer].Orv Hetil 2010; 151(44):1816-22OH
Pancreatic cancer is a relatively uncommon tumor, but even with early diagnosis, mortality rates are high, explaining why this form of cancer has now become a common cause of cancer mortality. There are no screening tests for early detection of pancreatic cancer. It is more common in men than women and is predominantly a disease of elderly people. There is wide variation in the incidence of pancreatic cancer around the world, suggesting that environmental factors are important in the pathogenesis. Smoking is the major known risk factor for pancreatic cancer, while dietary factors seem to be less important. Other possible risk factors include chronic pancreatitis, obesity and type 2 diabetes. Numerous inherited germ line mutations are associated with pancreatic cancer. Of these, hereditary pancreatitis confers the greatest risk, while BRCA2 mutations are the commonest inherited disorder. Polymorphisms in genes that control detoxification of environmental carcinogens and metabolic pathways may alter the risk of pancreatic cancer.