World Pancreatic Cancer Day 2021 Takes Place

Today (18 November), people across the globe mark World Pancreatic Cancer Day.

The World Pancreatic Cancer Coalition has organised this year’s campaign with the theme ‘It’s About Time’.

It’s part of Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month, which aims to raise awareness of the disease.

What is pancreatic cancer?

Pancreatic cancer begins in the pancreas, which produces digestive juices and hormones. It can spread to surrounding organs or blood vessels and, over time, can spread further in the body.

Pancreatic cancer is the 10th most common cancer in the UK, according to Cancer Research UK (CRUK). Almost half of cases in the UK are diagnosed in people aged 75 and over.

The disease is becoming more common, though. CRUK said that since the 1990s, rates of pancreatic cancer have increased by 17% in the UK. It’s expected that rates will rise by a further 6% from 2014 to 2025.

Pancreatic cancer survival

The day is marked to raise awareness of pancreatic cancer. It’s hoped that it will prevent millions of deaths every year by educating people about the disease and urging governments and individuals around the world to take action.

Its ultimate aim to increase the five-year survival rate of pancreatic cancer. The current rates depend on whether the cancer has spread:

  • Localised

This means the cancer has not spread beyond the pancreas. The five-year survival rate for this type stands at more than 40%.

  • Regional

This means the cancer has spread to nearby lymph nodes. Roughly 15% of people survive this type of pancreatic cancer for five years or more.

  • Distant

This means the cancer has spread to another part of the body. Almost 5% of patients survive this cancer for five years after diagnosis.

Generally, in England, more than 5% of people with pancreatic cancer survive the disease for five years or more.

CRUK said that one reason for poor survival rates is that this type of cancer is often diagnosed late. That means the cancer is more advanced, making it difficult to beat it.

According to Pancreatic Cancer Action (PCA), survival rates haven’t improved in almost 50 years. As a result, it is calling for more understanding about the disease within the public, the medical community and governments. It is also calling for more investment and interest in fighting the disease.

It is hoped that this will allow more people to be diagnosed in time for surgery, which is currently the best chance of a cure. Only around 10% of people can have this life-saving surgery.

Marking World Pancreatic Cancer Day

The WPCC is encouraging people to get involved by sharing their stories to help raise awareness of the disease.

It has provided resources, such as posters, to download and share. The PCA has urged people to post their experiences and posters on social media to start conversations about the disease and getting diagnosed early.

The PCA has also encouraged people to get involved across the wider Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month by hosting bake sales, fundraising in the community and taking part in various challenges.

For more information on pancreatic cancer, try the following resources:



It seems you are using an outdated browser.

This will impair your browsing experience around the web. Please visit one of the links below to update to a modern browser then re-open the site with the new browser.

Thank you


Can't find what you are looking for?

We are open as normal during the Coronavirus lockdown and are able to help with all your legal needs.

Call us free of charge

0800 567 7866

Request a Callback

Continue browsing