Background: Since 1996 the classification of pancreatic tumors was replaced by the new World Health Organization nomenclature. Formerly mucinous cystadenomas are now distinguished between intraductal papillary mucinous tumors of the pancreas (IPMT) and mucinous cystadenomas.
Methods: We reevaluated the pathological specimen and surgical therapy of 23 consecutive patients and followed up these patients up for 4 years in median. Between 1987 and 1997 we treated 8 patients with IPMT and 15 patients with mucinous cystadenomas.
Results: Eighty-five per cent of all patients were symptomatic. Ultrasonography and computed tomography were the most sensitive diagnostic techniques. In 25%, the entire pancreas was involved with IPMT; that was not the case in any of the patients with mucinous cystadenoma. All patients were resected with no perioperative mortality. After dismissal from the hospital, all resected patients are still alive after a median follow-up of 4 years. In no patient with IPMT, but in 1 patient with mucinous cystadenoma, the tumor recurred.
Conclusion: Surgical resection is the treatment of choice in all cystic tumors, and the late outcome of IPMT is as good as for mucinous cystadenoma.