Tumors of the Pancreas

What are tumors of the pancreas?

The pancreas is an organ responsible for helping the body digest food and regulate sugar. Tumors of the pancreas can develop from the organ’s exocrine cells, which make enzymes to aid in digestion, or endocrine cells, which produce hormones such as insulin and glucagon that control blood sugar levels.

Several different types of pancreatic tumors can develop in children, such as solid pseudopapillary tumors (SPTs), pancreatoblastomas, and neuroendocrine tumors (NETs). Although pancreatic tumors are rare in children, some kinds, such as NETs, occur more commonly in children with certain inherited or genetic conditions. SPTs are most often seen in girls and young women.

How we approach tumors of the pancreas at Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s

Children with tumors of the pancreas are treated at Dana-Farber/Boston Children's through our Endocrine-Oncology Program. Our integrated pediatric oncology service offers—in one specialized program—the combined expertise of a leading cancer center and a premier children’s hospital. We build a team to treat your child consisting of oncologists, endocrinologists, genetic counselors, and surgeons.

Find in-depth information on tumors of the pancreas on the Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s website, including answers to:

  • How are tumors of the pancreas classified?
  • What are the causes and symptoms of pancreatic tumors?
  • How are pancreatic tumors diagnosed?
  • What are the treatments for pancreatic tumors?
  • What is the latest research on pancreatic tumors?
  • What is the long-term outlook for pancreatic tumors?