Understanding Patrick Swayze’s disease

I felt a real pang of grief today when I learned that my very first crush had passed away. As

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I felt a real pang of grief today when I learned that my very first crush had passed away. As you’ve probably heard, actor Patrick Swayze has lost his battle with pancreatic cancer. He was only 57.

I’m usually not really affected by the news of a celebrity death, but Patrick Swayze was my childhood Prince Charming’a dancing bad-boy type with a 1,000-Watt smile. Every 6-year-old girl’s dream. So, when I first heard the sad news today, I did what I always do when someone I know suffers from an illness: I Googled. To save you time, here’s what I found out about pancreatic cancer:

The pancreas is an organ that lies behind the lower part of your stomach. It aids digestion by secreting enzymes and hormones that regulate your metabolism. The reason pancreatic cancer has such a poor prognosis is because it’s difficult to detect early, it spreads quickly and removing the cancer surgically isn’t possible. Symptoms including upper abdominal pain, weight loss and depression often don’t show themselves until the disease is advanced. Risk factors include smoking, family history of the disease, old age and obesity.

Check out the Mayo Clinic and the Canadian Cancer Society websites for more information on pancreatic cancer.

What do you do to find out more about a disease or health condition?

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