Pancreatic cancer

There were 256 cases of pancreatic cancer diagnosed in Northern Ireland in 2017.

Signs and symptoms

Pancreatic cancer may not cause symptoms for a long time and some people may have only one symptom. It can be difficult to make a diagnosis as the signs and symptoms are not specific to pancreatic cancer.

Symptoms may include:

  • Weight loss. This may occur even if there have been no changes in the amount of food you eat. You may feel generally unwell.
  • Pain or discomfort, although this is often not a feature at first.
  • Jaundice. Bile can’t drain away and builds up in the body causing symptoms such as yellowing of the whites of the eyes, itchy skin, dark yellow urine, and pale bowel motions.

Jaundice can also be caused by illnesses other than pancreatic cancer.

If you experience any of these symptoms, it is important that you see your GP.


There are a number of websites that provide information relating to pancreatic cancer, these include:

This is not an exhaustive list and other sources of support in Northern Ireland can also be accessed via Northern Ireland Cancer Network.