Preparing for Your Visit
Your initial visit at the UPMC Pancreatic Cancer Center (PCC) may take several hours, depending on your testing needs and how many physicians you may need to see.
Here’s how to prepare and what to expect.
Before You Arrive
- If you were referred to the PCC by your primary care physician, oncologist, or gastroenterologist, your doctor will provide us some basic information about your medical history and current diagnosis.
- We will contact you to schedule your initial clinic visit.
- Our office will send you a letter confirming your appointment, directions to the PCC, and a list of possible places to stay if you are from out of town.
What to Bring
- Your insurance card
- CT or MRI scans
- Medical records (these may have been faxed ahead of time by your doctor)
- Pancreas biopsy slides, if you have previously had a biopsy at an outside hospital
During Your Visit
- After registering, a nurse coordinator will provide you with an overview of the day, and will give you a packet of information to fill out.
- A physician will interview you to review your medical history, medications, and general condition, and will perform a physical examination.
- Depending on your condition, you may see a surgical oncologist, medical oncologist, radiation oncologist, and pain specialist. If needed, you will also see a nutrition counselor and a genetic counselor.
- The physicians will develop a plan of care that fits your individual case. You may have additional testing at this time.
- After the testing is completed, the team of pancreatic cancer specialists at the PCC will determine whether you are a candidate for surgical resection to remove the tumor.
If surgery is not appropriate
- You will be referred to a medical oncologist or radiation oncologist at the PCC who specializes in the treatment of advanced cancers of the pancreas.
- We will work with your referring physician when developing your treatment plan, and turn your care back over to your established doctor to allow you to get treatment closer to home when possible.