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Srp Arh Celok Lek. 2012 Mar-Apr;140(3-4):221-4.

Laparoscopic body-tail pancreatic resection for insulinoma.

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Department of Abdominal, Endocrine and Transplantation Surgery, Clinical Centre of Vojvodina, Novi Sad, Serbia.



Insulinomas are the most common endocrine tumours of the pancreas. They are more frequent in females, and they are commonly less than 2 cm in diameter. If conservative treatment of typical clinical symptoms fails, detailed diagnostic procedures are necessary and surgical treatment is indicated.The aim of this report was to emphasize the need of pancreatic resection when insulinoma is poorly visualized during surgery and when it is not possible to perform intraoperative ultrasonography.


A 27-year-old female patient suffered from hypoglycaemic episodes during physical efforts and fasting periods. After examination, diagnostic procedures and preoperative preparation, laparoscopic surgery was performed. The tumour was less than 10 mm in diameter, and it could not be visualized during laparoscopic exploration. The body and the tail of the pancreas were mobilized using ultrasound scissors and the resection was performed by two Endo GIA staplers. The surgical specimen was removed in an endo-bag. The postoperative course was without complications and the glycemic level was normalized. Macroscopic examination of the resected specimen showed a solitary, poorly demarcated, dark grey lesion, 0.8 cm in diameter, with a solid consistence in comparison with the surrounding gland tissue. Histological examination showed a poorly demarcated, subcapsular tissue in this area, consisting of uniform, irregular, cubic and short cylindrical cells, organized in clusters with pseudoglandular and "zellballen" formations.


In case when the insulinoma is so small in size that it cannot be visualized during operation, pancreas resection is a surgical procedure of choice. Laparoscopic surgery is preferred because of less postoperative complications and faster recovery.

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