DR P. MARAZZI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DR P. MARAZZI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Jaundiced eye of a 60 year old man caused by pancreatic cancer. A tumour at the head of the pancreas has blocked the bile duct, resulting in a build-up of bile. The yellow-brown bile pigment bilirubin builds up in body tissues, causing yellow discoloration of the skin and eyes. Jaundice is not a disease in itself, but is a symptom of many disorders of the liver and biliary system. Treatment is aimed at correcting the underlying cause. Pancreatic cancer is treated by surgical removal of the pancreas, often followed by radiotherapy and chemotherapy. It is hard to detect, however, and has often reached an inoperable stage by the time it is diagnosed.
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