Clinical Decision Making in Pancreatic Cancer

  • Robert A. Wolff
Reference work entry


Clinical decision-making has had limited application to patients with pancreatic cancer based on the relative lack of available therapeutic options compared with other malignancies. Nevertheless, sufficient clinical data has accumulated over the last two decades to provide oncologists with some basic tenets for more informed clinical decisions in partnership with their patients. These tenets rely on evidence-based information about tumor staging, patient performance status, and tumor biology which should facilitate the selection and timing of optimal therapy from various alternatives. Currently, these options include surgical intervention (curative or palliative), radiotherapy (as a component of adjuvant therapy or as treatment for locally advanced disease), and systemic chemotherapy. Importantly, psychosocial factors and medical comorbidities which may influence a patient’s compliance with, or tolerance to specific therapies must be openly discussed without prejudice. This review provides stage-specific recommendations for clinicians to consider as they formulate their treatment plans for active anti-cancer therapy or supportive care.


Pancreatic Cancer Positive Surgical Margin Advanced Pancreatic Cancer Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group Performance Status Gastric Outlet Obstruction 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robert A. Wolff
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of GI Medical Oncology, Division of Cancer MedicineUniversity of Texas, M.D. Anderson Cancer CenterHoustonUSA

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