End of life care for pancreatic cancer

If you have been told that your pancreatic cancer can no longer be treated and that you are approaching the last few months or weeks of your life, this may have come as a huge shock. You may have lots of questions or concerns. The information here can help.

We have information about what may happen in the last few months of life. We explain the symptoms people with pancreatic cancer may get towards the end of their life and how these are managed. There is also information about how to get the care and support you might need, and information for family members.

You may find some of this information upsetting or difficult to read. Not all of it may be relevant to you at the moment – use the links below to find the information you need.

Questions about end of life care?

If you have any questions, speak to your doctor or nurse.

You can also speak to our specialist nurses on our confidential Support Line. This can be a very difficult time, and they can answer your questions and talk through any worries you may have. They can also support families and carers.

Speak to our nurses
A specialist nurse taking a phone call.

Living Well to the End of Life: Palliative Care for Pancreatic Cancer webinars

‘Palliative care’ means providing specialist care to manage symptoms such as pain, as well as emotional and practical support. The aim is to help people live as well as possible for as long as possible. 

We run webinars on this topic with two consultants in palliative medicine, and you can watch recordings of past events on our website. 

Watch the recordings now

Read our booklet about end of life care

To read more about end of life care, download our booklet, Pancreatic cancer and end of life care: information for people in the last months, weeks and days of life.

You can also order a physical copy.

Order our booklet
An image of the front cover of Pancreatic Cancer UK's booklet, End of Life Care

References and acknowledgements


Email us at publications@pancreaticcancer.org.uk for references to the sources of information used to write this information.


We would like to thank the following people who reviewed our information about end of life care.

  • Achla Damania, GP Partner, Swanlow Practive, Winsford, Cheshire
  • Sarah Galbraith, Honorary Consultant in Palliative Medicine, Addenbrooke’s Hospital
  • Jonathan Hartley, Accredited Counsellor, Supervisor, Trainer, Consultant, Rixon Therapy Services
  • Agnieszka Jaworska, Macmillan End of Life Care Occupational Therapist, Northwick Park Hospital
  • Ollie Minton, Macmillan Consultant in Palliative Medicine, Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust
  • Caroline Morris, Macmillan Clinical Nurse Specialist, The Supportive and Palliative Care Team, The Christie NHS Foundation Trust
  • Adrian Tookman, Specialist Palliative Medicine, London
  • Maria Tynan, Macmillan Specialist Dietitian, Community MD Specialist Palliative Care Team, Southern Health and Social Care Trust
  • Phil Wilkins, Consultant in Palliative Medicine, Priscilla Bacon Centre for Specialist Palliative Care and Senior Lecturer Norwich UEA Medical School
  • Pancreatic Cancer UK Information Volunteers
  • Pancreatic Cancer UK Specialist Nurses

Published April 2021

Review date April 2024