Access Medicine's Case of the Week: Pancreatic Carcinoma

From: Pathophysiology of Disease Cases
Access Medicine's Case of the Week: Pancreatic Carcinoma


During a family reunion, a 62-year-old widower describes to his son a 1-month history of lethargy. He attributed it to the stress of a recent move from a large three-bedroom house into an apartment. His granddaughter comments that his eyes appear “yellow” and that he has lost a significant amount of weight since their last visit with him. Corroborating the finding of painless jaundice, his internist orders a contrast-enhanced spiral CT, revealing a 3 cm mass in the head of the pancreas.


A: On physical examination, the patient has a palpable and mildly tender gallbladder. What is the significance of this finding?

B. What hematologic abnormalities may be associated with pancreatic cancer?

C. What are some important clinical prognostic factors?


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