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Pancreatic Cancer Program

man and woman sit next to each other on examining table holding hands as a doctor sees them and takes their information on a clipboard

Program Overview

Penn’s Pancreatic Cancer’s multidisciplinary team works collaboratively and urgently to ensure our patients are diagnosed quickly and personalized treatment plans are developed and in place, ensuring the best outcome for each person. We may enroll patients in clinical trials not as a “last option” but as upfront therapies that are the first line of defense against pancreatic cancer.

Why Choose Penn's Pancreatic Cancer Program?

Penn’s interdisciplinary pancreatic cancer team is made up of surgeons, medical oncologists, radiation oncologists, radiologists, interventional radiologists, gastroenterologists, pathologists, genetic counselors, researchers and a dedicated pancreatic cancer nurse navigator. This team meets weekly to discuss cases and works together each day in patient care. Many of Penn’s physicians are also world-renowned researchers in pancreatic cancer. They are leading the way in clinical trials and advanced treatment options. Working hand-in-hand, they deliver the most advanced, personalized and compassionate care to patients and their families.

Treatment and Services Offered by the Pancreatic Cancer Program

Our treatment approach integrates surgery, ablation, radiation, and chemotherapy with an emphasis on the latest neoadjuvant/adjuvant (medication therapy administered before/after surgery) protocols and clinical trials.
  • Surgery
    Pancreas surgery is technically difficult and complex. Each of our pancreatic cancer surgeons has extensive specialized training and years of experience. They lead the way in advanced care, surgical research and education not only in the Philadelphia region but nationally.
    • Whipple Procedure (also called a pancreatoduodenectomy)
    • Distal Pancreatectomy
    • Total Pancreatectomy
    • Pylorus-sparing Whipple
    • Enucleation (for certain rare types of cancer)
  • Radiation therapy
    • Three-dimensional conformal radiation therapy
    • Intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT)
    • Proton therapy at Robert’s Proton Therapy Center
    • Volumetric-modulated arc therapy (VMAT)
  • Chemotherapy and biologic therapies
  • Pancreatic Cancer Clinical Trials
  • Gastrointestinal Cancer Genetics
    For people who have, or at risk for, a hereditary gastrointestinal cancer.
  • Pancreatic Cyst Program

Dedicated Nurse Navigator

Penn’s Abramson Cancer Cancer has a dedicated pancreatic cancer nurse navigator to:

  • Guide you through diagnosis and help you decide your care plan from the start
  • Get an appointment for your second opinion
  • Help you schedule a next-day appointment with a pancreatic cancer surgeon
  • Help you schedule an appointment to see if you are eligible for a clinical trial

Contact: Patricia Gambino, MSN, RN or call 215-615-0537.

Pancreatic Cancer Clinical Trials and Research

Penn’s Pancreatic Cancer Research Center has one of the most active pancreatic cancer clinical trials program in the nation, with options for all pancreatic cancer patients, regardless of their stage. Together with the Parker Institute for Immunotherapy, we are revolutionizing care and advancing treatment through pancreatic cancer immunotherapy clinical trials.

Access the most up-to-date Pancreatic Cancer Clinical Trials.

Learn how our doctors and researchers are taking action to create more options and better strategies for pancreatic cancer treatment.

Pancreatic Cancer Networking Group

The Pancreatic Cancer Networking Group welcomes all patients, family, and friends affected by pancreatic cancer. We encourage one another, share resources and provide positive support. For more information, call Megan Melick, LSW at 215-360-0570.