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Small cell carcinoma of the pancreas: role of EUS-FNA and subsequent effective chemotherapy using carboplatin and etoposide

  • Original Article—Liver, Pancreas, and Biliary Tract
  • Published:
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Abstract

Background

Small cell carcinoma (SCC) of the pancreas is a rare entity, with only a few cases reported in the literature. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of combination chemotherapy with carboplatin and etoposide (CE) in SCC of the pancreas.

Methods

We performed a retrospective analysis of four patients diagnosed with SCC among 279 patients with malignant pancreatic tumors treated between 2000 and 2007. All patients were treated with combination chemotherapy using a schedule consisting of intravenous (IV) carboplatin (150 mg/m2) on day 1 and IV etoposide (80 mg/m2) on days 1, 2, and 3 every 28 days.

Results

Pathological diagnosis was confirmed by endoscopic ultrasonography-guided fine-needle aspiration (EUS-FNA) in all patients. Three patients treated with the combination chemotherapy achieved remission, two with a complete response and one with a partial response. The remaining one patient showed no change. One of the two patients with a complete response survived for 56 months following the diagnosis.

Conclusions

Combination chemotherapy with CE may be effective for the treatment of SCC of the pancreas; EUS-FNA plays an important role in distinguishing SCC from other pancreatic malignancies, leading to the appropriate treatment being given.

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Acknowledgments

The present study was supported by grants from the Japan Society for Promotion of Science.

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Correspondence to Masayuki Kitano.

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Sakamoto, H., Kitano, M., Komaki, T. et al. Small cell carcinoma of the pancreas: role of EUS-FNA and subsequent effective chemotherapy using carboplatin and etoposide. J Gastroenterol 44, 432–438 (2009). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00535-009-0004-3

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s00535-009-0004-3

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