Study shows certain gastrointestinal tumors associated with higher mortality

April 5, 2016, University of California - San Diego
Study shows certain gastrointestinal tumors associated with higher mortality
Jason Sicklick, MD, surgical oncologist at UC San Diego Health. Credit: UC San Diego Health

Researchers at University of California, San Diego School of Medicine have determined that certain gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GISTs) are more deadly than previously reported in medical literature. Findings are published online in the Journal of Gastrointestinal Surgery.

"While GISTs are rare, we have found that certain groups of these tumors result in a much higher mortality than expected," said Jason Sicklick, MD, assistant professor of surgery at UC San Diego School of Medicine and a at UC San Diego Health. "The 5-year mortality rate for malignant GISTs of less than 2 centimeters is 12.1 percent. This finding may be helpful in creating new guidelines for the treatment of these tumors."

GISTs are most commonly found in the stomach and small intestine and have significant variability in terms of size and malignant behavior. Sicklick noted that up to 30 percent of patients have GISTs less than 2 centimeters in size, or slightly more than one-half inch. More than 79 percent of patients have localized , while 11.4 percent have regional or distant metastatic disease. Previously, researchers did not expect any disease to have spread.

"For this study, we identified 378 patients with malignant GISTs of less than 2 cm between 2001 and 2011 from the SEER database," said Taylor M. Coe, first author and fourth-year medical student at UC San Diego School of Medicine. "While the distribution of disease was almost equal between men and women, African-Americans are 2.1 times more likely than Caucasians to develop GISTs. The reasons are unknown and need to be further evaluated."

Sicklick added that further studies are needed to develop novel risk assessments for with these small tumors and to determine appropriate indications for surgery and/or medical therapy.

Explore further: New at-risk group identified for gastrointestinal stromal tumors

Related Stories

New at-risk group identified for gastrointestinal stromal tumors

October 7, 2014
Researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine have, for the first time, clearly defined the epidemiology of gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GIST), which occur primarily in the lining of the stomach ...

Patients with gastrointestinal tumors at higher risk of other cancers

May 1, 2015
Researchers at UC San Diego School of Medicine conducted the first population-based study that characterizes the association and temporal relationship between gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GIST) and other cancers. The ...

Use of new systemic adjuvant therapy in gastrointestinal tumors increasing

March 2, 2015
A new study finds that the use of adjuvant systemic therapy for localized gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GISTs ) has significantly increased over time and that patients treated with the therapy have better survival than ...

Underappreciated cause of bowel obstruction should be included in surgical assessments

May 6, 2015
Each year, more than 10 million Americans seek medical attention, often in emergency situations, for symptoms of intestinal blockages. Researchers at the University California, San Diego School of Medicine have identified ...

New technology spots drugs' early impact on cancer

April 9, 2013
A new preclinical technology enables researchers to quickly determine if a particular treatment is effective against gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GISTs), providing a boost to animal research and possibly patient care, ...

Recommended for you

Compound in citrus oil could reduce dry mouth in head, neck cancer patients

May 21, 2018
A compound found in citrus oils could help alleviate dry mouth caused by radiation therapy in head and neck cancer patients, according to a new study by researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine.

Scientists reveal likely cause of childhood leukaemia

May 21, 2018
A major new analysis reveals for the first time the likely cause of most cases of childhood leukaemia, following more than a century of controversy about its origins.

Ice cream funds research showing new strategy against thyroid cancer

May 21, 2018
Anaplastic thyroid cancer is almost uniformly fatal, with an average lifespan of about 5 months after diagnosis. And standard treatment for the condition includes 7 weeks of radiation, often along with chemotherapy.

Bladder cancer model could pave the way for better drug efficacy studies

May 21, 2018
Understanding that not all bladder cancers are the same, researchers at the University of North Carolina Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center have created a tool that may help them to uncover why only a fraction of patients ...

MR spectroscopy imaging reveals effects of targeted treatment of mutant IDH1 gliomas

May 18, 2018
Using a novel imaging method, a Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) research team is investigating the mechanisms behind a potential targeted treatment for a subtype of the deadly brains tumors called gliomas. In their report ...

Particle shows promise to prevent the spread of triple-negative breast cancer

May 18, 2018
USC researchers have pinpointed a remedy to prevent the spread of triple-negative breast cancer. Metastatic breast cancer is a leading cause of death for women. The findings appear today in Nature Communications.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.