Expert consensus for the management of advanced or metastatic pancreatic neuroendocrine and carcinoid tumors
Neuroendocrine tumors (NETs) are rare tumors that have been increasing in incidence over the last 30 years with no significant changes in survival. As survival of patients with these tumors depends greatly on stage and histology, early diagnosis, classification and staging of tumors in patients in whom NETs are suspected are of great importance. Surgery, either with curative or palliative intent, is the mainstay of treatment for localized NETs. Therapeutic options for this disease almost invariably include somatostatin analogs to alleviate the symptoms of excessive hormone secretion. Other approaches for advanced disease may include hepatic artery embolization or ablation, peptide receptor radionuclide therapy and systemic chemotherapy. Recent advances regarding the signaling pathways involved in tumor development have allowed the development of novel targeted therapies. However, due to the lack of prognostic molecular markers to identify high-risk patients and the absence of a common pathogenesis in all patients, treatment selection is often empirical. There is therefore a need to establish a consensus for the treatment of this disease and to provide evidence-based clinical recommendations and algorithms to optimize and individualize the treatment and follow-up for these patients.