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Gastrolab Endoscopy Slideshows:
A Malignant Rectal Carcinoid Tumour

October 25, 2012

Gastrolab Endoscopy Slideshows: A A Malignant Rectal Carcinoid Tumour

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A malignant carcinoid tumour in the gastric body (corpus) on the smaller curvature

Carcinoid tumours are neuroendocrine malignant tumours with a characteristic pathologic appearance occuring in the gastrointestinal channel. About 4000 new cases of this disease is found in USA every year, main age of the patients is near 60. The etiology of this disease is not known. Small carcinoid tumours are often found in the appendix (about 40% of all cases), about one third is found in the small intestine. Carcinoid tumours are malignant, however small tumours in the appendix rarely cause metastatic lesions. A few percent of all malignant tumours in the stomach are carcinoid tumours. Small, clinically quite innocent, carcinoid tumours can be found in the stomach associated with atrophic gastritis. Carcinoid tumours in the colorectal area are twice as common in the the rectum than in the colon. Carcinoid tumours produce several active substanses like serotonin, histamine and other vasoactive peptides. If these substances are not inactivated in the liver they can cause a syndrome called carcinoid syndrome, the main symptom of which is flushing attacks, abdominal cramps, diarrhea and elevated blood pressure. Carcinoid syndrome is most often a sign of disseminated disease with mestastatic tumours in the liver. Surgery is the treatment of choice if possible. Symptoms in disseminated disease with carcinoid syndrome can be relieved by medical therapy.

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