Surgery Viable Treatment for Pancreatic Cancer Patients Following Chemotherapy

Surgery is an underused, and viable treatment option for patients with stage II pancreatic cancer, according to a study published in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons.

In this study, comprised of 11,699 stage II pancreatic cancer patients, 9,521 (81.4 percent) were treated with chemotherapy alone, while 2,178 (18.6 percent) underwent surgical resection and had positive margins (R1 or R2).

According to the results, patients who received chemotherapy followed by resection lived an average of 19.75 months, while those who received only chemotherapy lived an average of 10.12 months. “Our results show that surgery is viable in more cases than we thought,” said Amanda K. Arrington, MD, MHM, FACS, a surgical oncologist at the University of Arizona Department of Surgery, Tucson via a press release.


“Based on this study, surgeons can be a little more aggressive and offer surgical treatment more often than not to stage II pancreatic cancer patients,” Dr. Arrington said. “There are ongoing studies looking at whether more pancreatic cancer patients, including stage I patients, would benefit from surgery after chemotherapy.”