Carcinoid tumour

Lancet. 1998 Sep 5;352(9130):799-805. doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(98)02286-7.


Carcinoid tumours are often indolent asymptomatic tumours. However, a small but significant proportion are malignant and difficult to manage. Multiple endocrine neoplasia type 1 (MEN-1) may be associated with carcinoid tumours and should therefore be considered in the investigation of these patients. This review puts into context the use of newer imaging modalities, including octreotide scintigraphy. The therapeutic treatment options are discussed, including the use of octreotide, the role of receptor-targeted therapy, hepatic-artery embolisation, and the arguments against chemotherapy. We review the need for careful patient selection when considering curative and palliative surgery, including liver transplantation. We conclude that there are now better diagnostic tools and therapeutic options available for those patients with malignant carcinoid tumours, and that these patients are best managed by a multidisciplinary approach. Earlier detection and treatment of these tumours should lead to improved quality of life and survival, which, ideally, should be assessed in formal trials.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Carcinoid Tumor* / chemistry
  • Carcinoid Tumor* / classification
  • Carcinoid Tumor* / pathology
  • Carcinoid Tumor* / physiopathology
  • Carcinoid Tumor* / therapy
  • Humans