What is Acinar Cell Carcinoma?
Acinar Cell Carcinoma is a rare form of cancer that affects the pancreas. It is a form of exocrine tumour, which means it begins in the exocrine (enzyme-producing) cells of the pancreas. Acinar Cell Carcinoma accounts for around 1-5% of pancreatic cancers in adults. This makes it very rare.
Causes and Risk Factors for Acinar Cell Carcinoma:
It is difficult to determine an exact cause for cancers such as Acinar Cell Carcinoma. However, several risk factors have been tied to this form of cancer. A risk factor is something that increases the likelihood of Acinar Cell Carcinoma. Risk factors do not guarantee that Acinar Cell Carcinoma will occur.
Below are some of the most common risk factors associated with Acinar Cell Carcinoma:
- Age – It is most common in adults, particularly people over 60 years of age. The most common (mean) age for it to occur is 62 years. ACC is rare in youth and children
- Gender – Men are more likely to be diagnosed with Acinar Cell Carcinoma. They make up around 85% of cases.
- Lipase hypersecretion syndrome –Lipase hypersecretion syndrome is a rare disorder resulting from neoplastic exocrine excess. It is present in 10% of ACC cases.
Symptoms of Acinar Cell Carcinoma:
It has a high chance of metastasis. This means that it can spread to other parts of the body very quickly. For this reason, it is important that if you have any concerns, you see a doctor as soon as possible. Cancer’s high rate of metastasis also means that people with ACC may experience different symptoms depending on where the tumour has spread to.
Below are some of the most common symptoms associated with Acinar Cell Carcinoma:
- Weight loss – Sudden, unexpected loss of body weight has been linked to it.
- Abdominal pain – As cancer progresses, patients will often feel noticeable pains in their lower abdomen and stomach.
- Nausea – Sufferers of ACC are likely to experience nausea and vomiting.
Treatment options for Acinar Cell Carcinoma:
Surgery is the preferred treatment for Acinar Cell Carcinoma, especially if it detected at early stages. during surgery, a team of surgeons will attempt to remove as much of the tumour as possible. Some surrounding tissue will also be removed in an attempt to prevent the cancer from growing back.
There is little data about other forms of treatment for ACC. However, doctors have been known to use chemotherapy to treat Acinar Cell Carcinoma following surgery. Chemotherapy is the use of drugs (administered orally or intravenously) to treat cancer. Chemotherapy is effective post-surgery becuase it reduces the likelihood of the cancer growing back. Chemotherapy can cause side effects, such as tiredness, fatigue, loss of appetite, balding of hair and an increased risk of infection.
What support can we give for Acinar Cell Carcinoma?
Acinar Cell Carcinoma is a rare cancer, meaning it is not as well known as other forms of cancer. Without a Ribbon is an Australian organisation that provides support for individuals who suffer from rare cancers. We provide a designated platform for Warriors to obtain information specific to their Rare Cancer. We also provide annual opportunities for our Warriors to meet and learn from each other.
If you suffer from a rare cancer such as Acinar Cell Carcinoma, we can help and support you through your journey thanks to the generous donations we receive. Click the link below to sign up and become a Warrior today!
You can help us with your donation:
Without a Ribbon is a charity that works hard to aid those who suffer from rare cancers. You can help our cause in a variety of ways:
Donations – Without a Ribbon is grateful for every donation received. Giving to Without a Ribbon helps us to provide ongoing support, organise the annual gathering and subsidise the costs of our Warriors attending these conferences.
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