Background. Pancreatic islet cell cancers are often characterized by the presence of endocrinopathies, an indolent clinical course, and a propensity for hepatic metastases. Hepatic metastases are associated with a negative impact on survival. The role of concurrent resections of pancreatic islet cell cancers and the hepatic metastases has not been defined. Methods. The records of all consecutive patients undergoing concurrent resections of pancreatic islet cell cancers and their hepatic metastases between 1980 and 1998 were reviewed. Outcomes regarding overall progression-free and symptom-free survival and perioperative morbidity and mortality were assessed. Results. All 23 patients underwent distal pancreatectomy and splenectomy. Six major (≥ 3 segments) and 17 minor (c3 segments) partial hepatectomies were performed. Complete gross resection of cancer (R0/R1) were performed in 9 patients and debulking resections (R2) (<10% residual tumor volume) in 14 patients. There were no perioperative deaths. Major complications occurred in 4 patients (18%). Overall, progression-free, and symptom-free survival was 71% (median: 76 months), 5% (median: 21 months), and 24% (median: 26 months), respectively, at 5 years. Conclusions. These data support aggressive concurrent resection of the pancreatic islet cell cancers and synchronic hepatic metastases when technically feasible. Because disease progression is frequent and the major cause of death, investigations of adjuvant and adjunctive therapies are warranted.
ASJC Scopus subject areas