Pancreatic Cancer

Pancreatic Cancer Surgical Options

Surgery is often the recommended treatment for pancreatic tumors.

Surgical oncologists at the UPMC Pancreatic Cancer Center perform a range of minimally-invasive (laparoscopic) surgical techniques to remove cancerous (malignant) and noncancerous (benign) pancreatic tumors. Your surgeon will discuss your options with you following a thorough review of your diagnosis.

Minimally-invasive Surgery for Pancreatic Cancer

Our surgeons at the UPMC Pancreatic Cancer Center provide the following minimally-invasive surgergical procedures for pancreatic cancer:

Type of Procedure Definition
Pancreaticoduodenectomy (Whipple)* The removal of a tumor located in the head of the pancreas with attached duodenum and bile duct. The gallbladder is also removed. Learn more about robotic Whipple surgery at UPMC CancerCenter.
Advanced Whipple* Includes all aspects of a standard Whipple and removal of the portal or superior mesenteric veins.
Distal pancreatectomy* The removal of a tumor located in the body or tail of the pancreas. This procedure may be performed as a laparoscopic procedure or an open surgery.
Appleby operation The removal of locally advanced cancers of the body of the pancreas involving the celiac or hepatic artery.

*Robotic techniques are available for these procedures. Your surgeon will discuss this option with you, if appropriate.

Benefits of Minimally-invasive Pancreatic Cancer Surgery

Minimally-invasive pancreatic surgery techniques may:

Before or after your pancreatic cancer surgery, your cancer care team may also recommend chemotherapy, radiation, or a combination of both to effectively battle your cancer.