UTRGV to host “Purple Night,” for pancreatic cancer awareness

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UTRGV School of Medicine

(Source: KGBT File Photo)

RIO GRANDE VALLEY, Texas (ValleyCentral) — UTRGV School of Medicine will host “Purple Night,” to raise awareness about pancreatic cancer.

November is Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month.

The event will take place from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 21 at the UTRGV Biomedical Research Facility, 5300 N. L St., McAllen, in the second-floor conference room, according to a press release from UTRGV.

The event will be available for those to attend both online and in-person and will feature discussions on pancreatic cancer. It is the fourth-leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the United States, according to the release.

Pancreatic cancer’s difficulty to detect early makes it one of the harder cancers to treat.  According to John Hopkin’s Medicine website, “the percentage of all patients who are living five years after diagnosis—is very low at just 5 to 10 percent.” 

One explanation for this is because “far more people are diagnosed at Stage IV when the disease has metastasized,” the website states.

“The most dangerous part of this disease is that there is no way of early detection, and the treatment portfolio is very narrow,” said Dr. Anupam Dhasmana, assistant research scientist with the Department of Immunology and Microbiology at the UTRGV School of Medicine. “Survival rate is extremely low. So, in that context, it is necessary to have increased clinical focus along with awareness to our community.”

Dhasmana said in the release that having events like this one are critical to teaching the community about cancer awareness, and possibly saving lives.

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