Stress promotes Pancreatic Cancer
1 month ago Shruti Goel 0
The pancreas is a glandular organ behind the stomach. When the cells in the pancreas begin to multiply and become out of control, then an abnormal condition arises known as Pancreatic Cancer. These cancerous cells have the ability to permeate other parts of the body as well. Due to this it becomes much dangerous and can cause harm to the body. The most common type of pancreatic cancer is pancreatic adenocarcinoma. It begins within the part of the pancreas which makes digestive enzymes. This cancer also occurs due to hormonal changes.
Yellow skin, abdominal or back pain, unexplained weight loss, light-colored stools, dark urine and loss of appetite are all the symptoms of pancreatic cancer. It does not occur in early age and more than half of the cases occur in those over an age of 70. It may cause due to tobacco smoking, obesity, diabetes and even some rare genetic conditions. According to a recent study pancreatic cancer is accelerated by stress.
In general, emotional and psychological stress plays a role in the development of tumors. It occurs through the sympathetic nervous system. This nervous system releases such hormones which give an escalation of energy to the body so that it becomes able to respond to perceived dangers. Due to the difficulty to measure stress, some biologists dismissed this idea. Others also wondered how stress could possibly be related to a biological process involving DNA mutations, within such an organ as the pancreas.
The research on this abnormal link between stress and pancreatic cancer was done on mice. They were raised in stressful living conditions such as confined to a small space and control mice were raised in normal housing. After observing for some time, researchers found that 38 percent of the stressed ones showed signs of antecedent to pancreatic cancer. No such condition was observed in the controlled ones. Although DNA mutations are necessary to start on the path of cancer, stress is definitely doing something to move things along. From the above research on mice, it was proved that stress increases the level of catecholamines in the bloodstream. It is also known as the fight-or-flight hormones. Stress sets up a forward loop between nerves and cancer cells that promote tumor development.
Researchers at the Columbia University Medical Center in the US said that the beta-blockers were found to increase survival in a mouth model of the disease. They are proved to be a crucial medication for the patients suffering from this cancer. On further analysis, it was found that the patients who were taking beta-blockers for other purposes lived two-thirds longer than those who were not taking these medications.