Why we’re taking on the toughest cancer

Pancreatic cancer has been left behind. Survival rates have improved enormously for most cancers. Sadly, for pancreatic cancer, this is not the case.

We’re facing a pancreatic cancer emergency

Why has survival not improved for pancreatic cancer?

Survival for pancreatic cancer has barely improved in the last 45 years. Pancreatic cancer is often diagnosed late because symptoms are vague, and may not appear until the disease is at an advanced stage. People often have to go back to their doctor with symptoms several times before they are referred for tests, which means they experience unnecessary delays in diagnosis and have to wait too long for treatment to start.

Alongside this, there are very few effective treatment options for pancreatic cancer, and many people are too unwell when diagnosed to undergo treatment. 7 in 10 will receive no active treatment and 9 out of 10 people with pancreatic cancer are diagnosed too late for surgery, the only treatment that can potentially cure the disease.

By 2026, more people will die from pancreatic cancer than from breast cancer.

Around 10,500 people a year are diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, but it has the lowest cancer survival rate with around 9,000 dying every year.

Despite being a common cancer and having the poorest survival rates, only 2% of the annual UK cancer research budget goes into pancreatic cancer. There has also been little prioritisation of pancreatic cancer by Governments across the UK and within national cancer strategies.

Pancreatic cancer has been left behind. This is shameful.

But thanks to our amazing supporters, there is hope. By working together, our actions will transform the future.

Read more about pancreatic cancer statistics 

Why is data on pancreatic cancer important?

Health data is important to ensure that people affected by the disease receive the best care possible. We need good data on pancreatic cancer in order to fully understand the disease. Data tells us how many people are diagnosed with cancer, what treatments they have, how long they live, and if this is getting better or worse. It can also show where outcomes are better so we can identify best practice in order to improve care.