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Pancreas Surgery

The pancreas is a special gland that has two main functions. Firstly, it has an integral role in managing blood sugar levels by producing insulin and glucagon among another hormones. The second role has to do with the production of digestive enzymes that help break down food and enable digestion and absorption.


When might pancreatic surgery be required?

Surgery may be required for masses in the pancreas which include tumours (both cancer and non-cancer types) and cystic lesions.


  • Tumours of the pancreas include pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma, neuroendocrine tumour and solid pseudopapillary neoplasm.

  • Cystic lesions of the pancreas may have an increased risk of transforming into cancers and may be considered for surgery.


The decision to undergo surgery, the type and timing of surgery, and the use of other modalities such as chemotherapy and radiotherapy, are made after thorough assessment and discussion in an appropriate multidisciplinary team meeting to ensure the most appropriate treatment pathway is identified for you. 

Dr Carr-Boyd is an active participant in Auckland City Hospital’s Upper Gastrointestinal multidisciplinary team meeting, as well as the national Neuroendocrine and the HCC (Hepatocellular carcinoma) multidisciplinary team meetings. Together, the team help to ensure patients with cancers in the pancreas are thoroughly and appropriately assessed, and that recommendations for treatment are based on thoughtful consideration by a team of specialists including surgeons, oncologists, radiologists and pathologists.

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