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      Surgical Treatment of Endocrine Pancreatic Tumours

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          Endocrine pancreatic tumours (EPTs) are uncommon, with a major challenge to alert physicians to their recognition and requirements of treatment. Functioning EPTs cause well-known clinical syndromes of hormone excess. Insulinomas, gastrinomas and glucagonomas are most common; vipomas and somatostatinomas are rare. EPTs also occur as non-functioning lesions without symptoms of hormone excess occasionally with ectopic hormone, such as ACTH and Cushing syndrome as a late complication. The majority of EPTs are sporadic, but they may also be part of a multiple endocrine neoplasia type 1 syndrome or rarely the von Hippel-Lindau syndrome. EPTs have been of great interest to endocrine surgeons and we have, during recent years, witnessed continuing advances in diagnosis, imaging and treatment of the different tumour entities. It has become obvious that surgical treatment of these tumours is of increased concern and can have a marked impact on symptoms and survival.

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          Most cited references 16

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          Surgery to cure the Zollinger-Ellison syndrome.

          The role of surgery in patients with the Zollinger-Ellison syndrome is controversial. To determine the efficacy of surgery in patients with this syndrome, we followed 151 consecutive patients who underwent laparotomy between 1981 and 1998. Of these patients, 123 had sporadic gastrinomas and 28 had multiple endocrine neoplasia type 1 with an imaged tumor of at least 3 cm in diameter. Tumor-localization studies and functional localization studies were performed routinely. All patients underwent surgery according to a similar operative protocol, and all patients who had surgery after 1986 underwent duodenotomy. The 151 patients underwent 180 exploratory operations. The mean (+/-SD) follow-up after the first operation was 8+/-4 years. Gastrinomas were found in 141 of the patients (93 percent), including all of the last 81 patients to undergo surgery. The tumors were located in the duodenum in 74 patients (49 percent) and in the pancreas in 36 patients (24 percent); however, primary tumors were found in lymph nodes in 17 patients (11 percent) and in another location in 13 patients (9 percent). The primary location was unknown in 24 patients (16 percent). Among the patients with sporadic gastrinomas, 34 percent were free of disease at 10 years, as compared with none of the patients with multiple endocrine neoplasia type 1. The overall 10-year survival rate was 94 percent. All patients with the Zollinger-Ellison syndrome who do not have multiple endocrine neoplasia type 1 or metastatic disease should be offered surgical exploration for possible cure.
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            Endoscopic ultrasound is highly accurate and directs management in patients with neuroendocrine tumors of the pancreas.

            Preoperative localization of pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors with traditional imaging fails in 40-60% of patients. Endoscopic ultrasound (EUS) is highly sensitive in the detection of these tumors. Previous reports included relatively few patients or required the collaboration of multiple centers. We report the results of EUS evaluation of 82 patients with pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors. We prospectively used EUS early in the diagnostic evaluation of patients with biochemical or clinical evidence of neuroendocrine tumors. Patients had surgical confirmation of tumor localization or clinical follow-up of >1 yr. Eighty-two patients underwent 91 examinations (cases). Thirty patients had multiple endocrine neoplasia syndrome type 1. One hundred pancreatic tumors were visualized by EUS in 54 different patients. The remaining 28 patients had no pancreatic tumor or an extrapancreatic tumor. Surgical/pathological confirmation was obtained in 75 patients. The mean tumor diameter was 1.51 cm and 71% of the tumors were < or =2.0 cm in diameter. Of the 54 explorations with surgical confirmation of a pancreatic tumor, EUS correctly localized the tumor in 50 patients (93%). Twenty-nine insulinomas, 18 gastrinomas, as well as one glucagonoma, one carcinoid tumor, and one somatostatinoma were localized. The most common site for tumor localization was the pancreatic head (46 patients). Most tumors were hypoechoic, homogenous, and had distinct margins. EUS of the pancreas was correctly negative in 20 of 21 patients (specificity, 95%). EUS was more accurate than angiography with or without stimulation testing (secretin for gastrinoma, calcium for insulinoma), transcutaneous ultrasound, and CT in those patients undergoing further imaging procedures. EUS was not reliable in localizing extrapancreatic tumors. In this series, the largest single center experience reported to date, EUS had an overall sensitivity and accuracy of 93% for pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors. Our results support the use of EUS as a primary diagnostic modality in the evaluation and management of patients with neuroendocrine tumors of the pancreas.
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              Nonfunctioning islet cell carcinoma of the pancreas: survival results in a contemporary series of 163 patients.

              The natural history of nonfunctioning islet cell carcinoma of the pancreas is poorly defined. We therefore reviewed our institutional experience during a period of 12 years to define more clearly the natural history of this disease as a basis for individual therapeutic recommendations. The records of all patients who had histologically or cytologically confirmed nonfunctioning islet cell carcinoma of the pancreas were retrospectively reviewed. Patients were grouped by extent of disease at diagnosis and by initial treatment. Survival distributions were estimated by Kaplan-Meier analysis. One hundred sixty-three patients with nonfunctioning islet cell carcinoma of the pancreas were identified. The overall median survival duration was 3.2 years. The median survival was 7.1 years in patients with localized disease who underwent a potentially curative resection and 5.2 years in those with locally advanced, unresectable, nonmetastatic disease (P = .04). Patients with metastatic disease that could not be resected had a median survival of 2.1 years. Patients with completely resected localized disease had a long median survival. Patients with nonmetastatic but unresectable locally advanced disease also had a surprisingly long median survival; major treatment-related morbidity may be hard to justify in this subgroup. The short median survival in patients with metastatic disease suggests that the frequent practice of observation in this patient subgroup needs to be reexamined and that continued investigation of regional and systemic therapies with novel agents is warranted.

                Author and article information

                S. Karger AG
                October 2004
                15 October 2004
                : 80
                : Suppl 1
                : 62-66
                Department of Surgery, University Hospital, Uppsala, Sweden
                80744 Neuroendocrinology 2004;80(suppl 1):62–66
                © 2004 S. Karger AG, Basel

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                Page count
                References: 25, Pages: 5


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