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Retropancreatic Retroperitoneal Tumors: A 30-year Experience with 38 Cases

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Retropancreatic retroperitoneal tumors (RRTs) are seldom encountered in clinical practice. The lack of characteristics on clinical presentation and imaging make preoperative diagnosis difficult and surgical management remains a challenge. This retrospective report surveys the presenting diagnosis and surgical management of 38 patients with RRTs presenting at our center between August 1981 and May 2012. Six patients were misdiagnosed on the basis of computerized tomography and one each by magnetic resonance imaging and magnetic resonance cholangiopancreatography. Tumors were localized posterior to the pancreatic head and uncinate process (n = 18); posterior to the neck and body of the pancreas (n = 9); or posterior to the body and tail of the pancreas (n = 11). Thirty-three patients underwent surgical resections. Operative approaches were chosen on the basis of tumor size and localization. The tumors were mostly commonly originating from neurogenic tissue (n = 16). There were 25 benign neoplasms (65.8%), 10 malignant tumors (26.3%), and three undefined tumors. The morbidity of postsurgical complications was 21 per cent (eight of 38). The number of patients who underwent follow-up was 21, and the mean follow-up time was 35 months (range, 2 to 90 months). Three patients died during follow-up. The morbility of local recurrence was 10.5 per cent (four of 38). Definitive diagnosis of RRTs is made at laparotomy. Complete resection remains the fundamental objective of disease management. Different operative approaches should be used according to tumor localization and size.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of General Surgery, The First Affiliated Hospital of China Medical University, Shenyang, Liaoning Province, China

Publication date: May 1, 2013

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