Characteristics and treatment results of patients with gastroenteropancreatic neuroendocrine tumors in a tertiary care centre

BMC Endocr Disord. 2023 Apr 7;23(1):74. doi: 10.1186/s12902-023-01326-1.


Background: Gastroenteropancreatic Neuroendocrine tumors (GEP-NET) are rare neoplasms with limited reported data from the Middle East. Our study aims to report the clinicopathological feature, treatment patterns, and survival outcomes of patients with GEP-NET from our part of the world.

Methods: Medical records of patients diagnosed with GEP-NET between January 2011 and December 2016 at a single center in Saudi Arabia were reviewed retrospectively, and complete clinicopathological and treatment data were collected. Patients' survival was estimated by the Kaplan-Meier method.

Results: A total of 72 patients were identified with a median age of 51 years (range 27-82) and male-to-female ratio of (1.1). The most common tumor location was the pancreas (29.1%), followed by small bowel (25%), stomach (12.5%), rectum (8.3%), colon (8.3%), and appendix (6.9%). Forty-one patients (57%) had well-differentiated grade (G)1, 21 (29%) had G2, and 4 (6%) had G3. In five patients, the pathology was neuroendocrine carcinoma and in one it could not be classified. 54.2% of the patients were metastatic at diagnosis. Forty-two patients underwent surgical resection as primary management while 26 underwent systemic therapy, three patients were put on active surveillance, and one was treated endoscopically with polypectomy. The 5-year overall survival and progression-free survivals were 77.2% and 49%, respectively, for the whole group. Patients with G1 and 2 disease, lower Ki-67 index, and surgically treated as primary management had significantly better survival outcomes.

Conclusion: Our study suggests that the most common tumor locations are similar to western reported data. However, there seems to be a higher incidence of metastatic disease at presentation than in the rest of the world.

Keywords: GEP-NET; Gastroenteropancreatic; Neuroendocrine tumor; Survival.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Intestinal Neoplasms* / epidemiology
  • Intestinal Neoplasms* / surgery
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neuroendocrine Tumors* / epidemiology
  • Neuroendocrine Tumors* / pathology
  • Neuroendocrine Tumors* / therapy
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms* / epidemiology
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms* / surgery
  • Prognosis
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Stomach Neoplasms* / epidemiology
  • Stomach Neoplasms* / therapy
  • Tertiary Care Centers

Supplementary concepts

  • Gastro-enteropancreatic neuroendocrine tumor