The NET Alliance™ and Novartis Oncology continue their commitment to improving knowledge and management of neuroendocrine tumors, and empowering patients to be more informed advocates.

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Know your disease 

Be sure to talk to your doctor about any symptoms you have. Keep notes about new symptoms or changes in your symptoms. Be sure to talk to your doctor about your symptoms at every visit.

What are symptoms caused by pancreatic NET?

Symptoms you might have

Pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors, known as pancreatic NET, usually cause symptoms because they make large amounts of hormones. Others cause symptoms when they grow and spread (metastasize).

Neuroendocrine tumors that release hormones are sometimes called functional.

There are many types of functional neuroendocrine tumors that can start in your pancreas. Your doctor may call it a name based on the hormone it releases.


Insulinomas release insulin, a hormone that lowers sugar levels in your blood. They may cause symptoms like

  • Low blood sugar
  • Nervousness
  • Excess sweating
  • Blurred vision
  • Confusion

Glucagonomas release glucagon, a hormone that raises sugar levels in your blood. They may cause symptoms like

  • Diabetes (elevated blood sugar)
  • Rash
  • Weight loss

Gastrinomas release gastrin, a hormone that signals your stomach to produce digestive acids and enzymes. They may cause symptoms like

  • Ulcers
  • Abdominal pain and cramping
  • Diarrhea
  • Heartburn

VIPomas release vasoactive intestinal peptide, a substance that stimulates the release of water and electrolytes in your intestines. They may cause symptoms like

  • Watery diarrhea
  • Abdominal pain and cramping
  • Constipation

Somatostatinomas release somatostatin, a hormone that stops the release of other hormones, including gastrin, insulin, and glucagon. They may cause symptoms like

  • Diabetes (elevated blood sugar)
  • Diarrhea/bulky diarrhea
  • Weight loss

Neuroendocrine tumors that do not release hormones are sometimes called nonfunctional.

Nonfunctional neuroendocrine tumors in your pancreas may cause symptoms like

  • Abdominal pain and cramping
  • Weight loss

Know your disease 

Be sure to talk to your doctor about any symptoms you have. Keep notes about new symptoms or changes in your symptoms. Be sure to talk to your doctor about your symptoms at every visit.