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Hepatogastroenterology. 2012 Jun;59(116):1282-5. doi: 10.5754/hge11896.

Accurate combined preoperative localization of insulinomas aid the choice for enucleation: a single institution experience over 25 years.

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Department of Endocrinology, Chinese PLA General Hospital, Beijing, China.



To assess the accuracy of combined preoperative localizations and analyze the change in management strategy of operation of insulinoma.


One hundred and seventy-two patients with a diagnosis of insulinoma at a tertiary hospital between 1985 and 2010 were reviewed, where accurate combined preoperative localization before surgical exploration was the primary management policy of insulinoma. Operation details for 147 patients were checked.


An average of 2.89 preoperative localization studies including 1.61 non-invasive studies and 1.28 invasive studies were utilized per patient. Contrast-enhanced ultrasonography (CEUS) was the most sensitive invasive modality (88.1%) whereas magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) was the most sensitive non-invasive modality (64.0%). All 147 patients underwent complete surgical resection which included 126 enucleations and 18 distal pancreatectomies with a cure rate of 95.2% (140/147) at a median follow-up of 45 months (range 1-248). The postoperative morbidity and long-term outcome of enucleation was similar to distal pancreatectomy despite a higher rate of microscopic margin involvement.


Accurate combined preoperative localization of insulinomas is useful of the choice of enucleation, eliminates the need for blind distal pancreatectomy and avoids re-operation. Whenever possible, a pancreas-sparing approach such as enucleation should be adopted.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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