Background: The low incidence of malignant "functional" (F) or "nonfunctional" (NF) neuroendocrine islet cell tumors (ICTs) of the pancreas represents a challenge to precise post-therapeutic survival prediction. This study examined the survival impact of malignant pancreatic ICT morphologic subtypes.
Methods: A pancreatic ICT data set was created from a US-based population database from 1980-2004. Prognostic factors with survival impact and relationships between surgical therapy and overall survival (OS) were analyzed.
Results: There were 2,350 individuals with malignant ICTs. Histologic subtypes included carcinoid tumors, islet cell carcinomas, neuroendocrine carcinomas, and malignant gastrinomas, insulinomas, glucagonomas, or VIPomas. There was no difference in resection rates between FICTs and NFICTs (23% vs. 20%, P = ns). Median OS was 30 months, with group differences ranging from NE carcinomas (21) to VIPomas (96; P < 0.0001). Median OS of resected versus unresected FICTs was 172 versus 37 months, while that of NFICTs was 113 versus 18 months (P < 0.0001). Compared to neuroendocrine carcinomas, hazard ratios were: VIPomas 0.48, gastrinomas 0.65, carcinoid tumors 0.76, insulinomas 0.84, glucagonomas 0.93, and islet cell carcinomas 1.0.
Conclusions: When controlled for other established prognostic parameters, histopathologic subtype assignment of pancreatic ICTs affects survival prediction. Resection is associated with superior survival for all tumor types.
Copyright © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.