Doctors explain why pancreatic cancer is so deadly

Doctors explain why pancreatic cancer is so deadly

CNN) - Cancer is back in the news after legendary singer Aretha Franklin died while battling the disease last week

Pancreatic cancer is the third deadliest cancer in the United States after lung and colorectal cancers

But, doctors are still left somewhat stumped by the disease.

One of the biggest concerns when it comes to pancreatic cancer is that patients often don't exhibit any symptoms during the early, treatable stage of the tumor.

Which is what doctors say makes it so deadly

In fact, about 95-percent of people who get pancreatic cancer, will die from it

And in 2018 it will claim almost 45,000 lives.

The disease tends to strike those older than 45. The average age is 71 years old.

And men have a slightly higher likelihood of developing the disease

There are two types of tumors that develop in the pancreas, exocrine and endocrine,

Exocrine tumors tend to be more aggressive.

This cancer can be controlled by surgery, if it is found before it has spread

Other options, such as transplants, or approved medication, are making progress, but can come with serious side effects.

The oblong organ deep in your abdomen plays a big role in your digestive and endocrine systems

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