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David Llewellyn, Rajaventhan Srirajaskanthan, Royce Vincent, Catherine Guy, Eftychia E Drakou, Simon Aylwin, Ashley Grossman, John K Ramage, and Georgios K Dimitriadis

Calcitonin-secreting neuroendocrine neoplasms of the lung are rare, with few cases reported in the literature. Differentiating between medullary thyroid carcinoma and an ectopic source of calcitonin secretion can represent a complex diagnostic conundrum for managing physicians, with cases of unnecessary thyroidectomy reported in the literature. This manuscript reports a case of ectopic hypercalcitonaemia from a metastatic neuroendocrine neoplasm of the lung with concurrent thyroid pathology and summarises the results of a systematic review of the literature. Medical Literature Analysis and Retrieval System Online, Excerpta Medica, Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, ClinicalTrials.gov and SCOPUS databases were systematically and critically appraised for all peer reviewed manuscripts that suitably fulfilled the inclusion criteria established a priori. The protocol for this systematic review was developed according to the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic review and Meta-Analysis Protocols, and followed methods outlined in The Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews of Interventions. This systematic review is registered with PROSPERO.

It is vital to consider diagnoses other than medullary thyroid carcinoma when presented with a patient with raised calcitonin, as it is not pathognomonic of medullary thyroid carcinoma. Lung neuroendocrine neoplasms can appear similar to medullary thyroid carcinoma histologically, they can secrete calcitonin and metastasize to the thyroid. Patients with medullary thyroid carcinoma may show stimulated calcitonin values over two or more times above the basal values, whereas calcitonin-secreting neuroendocrine neoplasms may or may not show response to stimulation tests. The present review summarises existing evidence from cases of ectopic hypercalcitonaemia to lung neuroendocrine neoplasms.

Open access

Logan Mills, Panagiotis Drymousis, Yogesh Vashist, Christoph Burdelski, Andreas Prachalias, Parthi Srinivasan, Krishna Menon, Corina Cotoi, Saboor Khan, Judith Cave, Thomas Armstrong, Martin O Weickert, Jakob Izbicki, Joerg Schrader, Andreja Frilling, John K Ramage, and Raj Srirajaskanthan

Small non-functioning pancreatic NETs (pNETs) ≤2 cm can pose a management dilemma in terms of surveillance or resection. There is evidence to suggest that a surveillance approach can be considered since there are no significant radiological changes observed in lesions during long-term follow-up. However, other studies have suggested loco-regional spread can be present in ≤2 cm pNETs. The aim of this study was to characterise the prevalence of malignant features and identify any useful predictive variables in a surgically resected cohort of pNETs. 418 patients with pNETs were identified from 5 NET centres. Of these 227 were included for main analysis of tumour characteristics. Mean age of patients was 57 years, 47% were female. The median follow-up was 48.2 months. Malignant features were identified in 38% of ≤2 cm pNETs. ROC analysis showed that the current cut-off of 20 mm had a sensitivity of 84% for malignancy. The rate of malignant features is in keeping with other surgical series and challenges the belief that small pNETs have a low malignant potential. This study does not support a 20 mm size cut-off as being a solitary safe parameter to exclude malignancy in pNETs.