Malignancy and Meckel’s diverticulum: A systematic literature review and 14-year experience at a tertiary referral center

Kathleen van Malderen, Priya Vijayvargiya, Michael Camilleri, David W. Larson, Robert Cima

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Background: Meckel’s diverticulum is present in about 2% of the population. The literature reports 3.2% incidence of tumors within Meckel’s diverticulum; the tumors are predominantly benign. Objective and methods: The purpose of this study was to evaluate malignant tumors in Meckel’s diverticulum through systematic review of the literature and review of electronic medical records including pathology reports over 14 years at the Mayo Clinic, Rochester, USA. Results: A literature review over the last 10 years identified 37 citations with 402 patients (median age: 58 years; 68.9% males). The predominant malignancy reported was neuroendocrine tumor 84.6%, followed by gastrointestinal stromal tumor 8.2%, and adenocarcinoma 6%. At the time of diagnosis, 29.5% of patients had metastases. In the Mayo Clinic electronic medical records review, there were 19 patients (5.1% of them surgically removed Meckel’s diverticulum) who had a malignancy associated with Meckel’s diverticulum: 63.2% neuroendocrine tumor, 10.5% gastrointestinal stromal tumor, 5.3% adenocarcinoma, 5.3% pancreatic epithelial neoplasia, and 15.8% metastases from secondary location. Median size of the malignancy was 7 mm, and 17/19 malignancies were coincidental findings. Most neuroendocrine tumors infiltrated the submucosa, while gastrointestinal stromal tumor and adenocarcinoma invaded the serosa. At the time of diagnosis, 33.3% of patients had metastases. Conclusion: About 5% of Meckel’s diverticulums resected were associated with malignant tumors, most commonly neuroendocrine tumor, and a significant portion of Meckel’s diverticulum malignancy was metastatic at the time of discovery.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)739-747
Number of pages9
JournalUnited European Gastroenterology Journal
Issue number5
StatePublished - Jun 1 2018


  • Carcinoid
  • adenocarcinoma
  • gastrointestinal stromal tumor
  • neuroendocrine tumor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Gastroenterology


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