Glucagonomas/diabetico-dermatogenic syndrome (DDS): a statistical evaluation of 407 reported cases

J Hepatobiliary Pancreat Surg. 1998;5(3):312-9. doi: 10.1007/s005340050052.


Of the rare pancreatic endocrinomas, glu-cagonomas, either with or without diabetico-dermatogenic syndrome (DDS), are probably third in frequency after insulinomas and gastrinomas. This study was carried out to evaluate the present status of glucagonoma/DDS in a statistically reliable number of cases and to provide precise information to investigators actively working in this particular field of research. A total of 407 cases of glucagonoma were collected from the international literature and evaluated according to characteristic clinicopathologic features. Findings were: (1) The incidence of DDS was 57.2% (233/407). (2) The tail of the pancreas was predominantly involved, in 53.7% (213/397). (3) One-third of the tumors (80 of 276 for whom size was recorded; 29.0%) measured 20 mm or less. (4) Metastases occurred in 51.4% (209/407) and malignant tumors in 60.7% (247/407). (5) Multiplicity occurred in 11.8% (48/407), and associated multiple endocrine neoplasia type 1 in 13. 0% (53/407). (6) In the patients with DDS, the rates of hyperglucagonemia, necrolytic migratory erythema, diabetes mellitus, loss of weight, hypo-aminoacidemia, or anemia, as representative constituents of DDS, were all higher than rates in the overall series (P < 0.01). (7) The 10-year survival rate in the 233 patients with DDS was 51.6% in those with metastases and 64.3% in those without metastases (P < 0.001).

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Female
  • Glucagonoma / epidemiology*
  • Glucagonoma / secondary
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Multiple Endocrine Neoplasia Type 1 / epidemiology
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms / epidemiology*
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms / pathology
  • Survival Rate
  • Syndrome