Campaigning for earlier diagnosis

We believe it’s about time that people with pancreatic cancer should be diagnosed early enough to be saved. Stand with Pancreatic Cancer UK to unite and fight for early diagnosis.

Read all about our campaigning work


The case for earlier diagnosis


Pancreatic cancer is particularly hard to diagnose, which is one of the key reasons it is such a tough disease to survive. Signs and symptoms can often be vague and non-specific, so misdiagnosis is very common, resulting in many patients not being diagnosed until their cancer is at an advanced stage. At this late stage, surgery is usually not possible – the only treatment that has the potential to cure the disease. It’s unacceptable that more than half of people diagnosed with pancreatic cancer die within 3 months.

Often pancreatic cancer isn’t detected in GP surgeries at all. Shockingly, nearly half of all pancreatic cancer patients are diagnosed in A&E or other emergency care.

That’s because, unlike other cancers, doctors have no simple way of spotting the disease. No blood test, no screening, no simple test. 

People shouldn’t need to wait until they’re in emergency care to be diagnosed. 

Early diagnosis is essential to our fight


That’s why we’re continuing to put pressure on governments across the UK – from Westminster, to Holyrood, to Stormont and the Senedd – to ensure that politicians understand the urgency of this problem.

We are meeting with MPs and other parliamentarians, tabling questions in parliaments, and pushing for debates so that Government is forced to pay attention to this cancer emergency.

To make early diagnosis a reality, we need to get the attention of the people in power. That’s why having as many MPs, MSPs, MLAs and MSs as possible on our side is so important.

Our 2019 campaign: Unite-Diagnose-SaveLives


The aim of our Unite-Diagnose-SaveLives campaign was to call for more money for more research into early diagnosis. 

Case Study


Ann’s son, Robert had been suffering with fatigue and back pain for years but was only diagnosed when he was rushed to A&E. Robert’s diagnosis came too late for  treatment, and he died, aged 26, just four months afterwards. Sadly, we hear stories like Robert’s time and time again.

That’s why with your help we bought together some of the best researchers in the UK to find a simple way to diagnose people earlier and save lives from pancreatic cancer.

Thank you to everyone that has stood behind Pancreatic Cancer UK’s groundbreaking research; to have a simple test to detect pancreatic cancer by 2024.

Nearly 35,000 of you signed up to stand with us for early diagnosis. This is a wonderful tribute to Robert’s memory and to the memory of every person lost to this devastating disease. It’s also a major step towards saving more lives.

Ann Stella

Can you help by getting your local politician onside? Contact our Campaigns team to let us know.