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Is Endoscopic Resection of Gastric Gastrointestinal Stromal Tumors Safe?

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Gastric gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GIST) commonly present as an incidental finding on upper gastrointestinal endoscopy. Advances in endoscopic technology have allowed some to perform attempted excision of these lesions endoscopically. The oncologic implications of such an approach remain unclear. A-74-year-old man initially presented with an incidental finding of a 1.6 × 1.8-cm c-kit-positive gastrointestinal stromal tumor with low mitotic activity in the gastric fundus. The patient underwent an attempted endoscopic resection of this mass resulting in incomplete excision and gastric perforation. There was immediate conversion to a celiotomy and the patient underwent partial gastrectomy; there was no evidence of metastatic GIST. Three years later, the patient was noted to have an asymptomatic large pelvic mass (4 × 7 cm) on CT scan and was referred for evaluation. Subsequent surgical exploration revealed a single mass adherent to the pelvic sidewall that was resected. Subsequent pathology demonstrated a c-kit-positive GIST consistent with metastatic disease. Eighteen months later, the patient remains free of disease. Complications from endoscopic resection of gastric GIST may be associated with peritoneal dissemination of disease. This should be considered when formulating a strategy for management of gastric GIST. Complete transperitoneal excision (either open or laparoscopic) with clear margins and without tumor rupture remains the gold standard for management of gastric GIST.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: From the Division of Surgical Oncology, Department of Surgery, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida

Publication date: December 1, 2008

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  • The Southeastern Surgical Congress owns and publishes The American Surgeon monthly. It is the official journal of the Congress and the Southern California Chapter of the American College of Surgeons, which all members receive each month. The journal brings up to date clinical advances in surgical knowledge in a popular reference format. In addition to publishing papers presented at the annual meetings of the associated organizations, the journal publishes selected unsolicited manuscripts. If you have a manuscript you'd like to see published in The American Surgeon select "Information for Authors" from the Related Information options below. A Copyright Release Form must accompany all manuscripts submitted.
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