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Clinical Summary

Pancreatic Cancer: Screening

Recommendations made by the USPSTF are independent of the U.S. government. They should not be construed as an official position of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality or the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

Screening for Pancreatic Cancer: Clinical Summary of USPSTF Recommendation

Population Asymptomatic adults
Recommendation Do not screen for pancreatic cancer.
Grade: D
Risk Assessment Persons with hereditary pancreatitis may have a higher lifetime risk for developing pancreatic cancer. However, the USPSTF did not review the effectiveness of screening these patients.
Balance of Benefits and Harms The USPSTF found no evidence that screening for pancreatic cancer is effective in reducing mortality. There is a potential for significant harm due to the very low prevalence of pancreatic cancer, limited accuracy of available screening tests, the invasive nature of diagnostic tests, and the poor outcomes of treatment. As a result, the USPSTF concluded that the harms of screening for pancreatic cancer exceed any potential benefits.
Other Relevant USPSTF Recommendations The USPSTF has made recommendations on screening for many other types of cancer. These recommendations are available at
Current as of: April 2004

Internet Citation: Clinical Summary: Pancreatic Cancer: Screening. U.S. Preventive Services Task Force. April 2004.

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