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Neuroendocrine tumours of the gallbladder: three cases and a review of the literature
  1. S Iype1,
  2. T A Mirza1,
  3. D J Propper2,
  4. S Bhattacharya1,
  5. R M Feakins3,
  6. H M Kocher1
  1. 1
    Department of HPB Surgery, Barts and the London HPB Centre, The Royal London Hospital, London, UK
  2. 2
    Department of Oncology, Barts and the London HPB Centre, The Royal London Hospital, London, UK
  3. 3
    Department of Histopathology, Barts and the London HPB Centre, The Royal London Hospital, London, UK
  1. Dr H M Kocher, Centre for Tumour Biology, Institute of Cancer and CR-UK Clinical Centre, Barts & The London School of Medicine & Dentistry, John Vane Science Centre, Charterhouse Square, London EC1M 6BQ, UK; h.kocher{at}


Primary neuroendocrine tumours (NETs) of the gallbladder are rare. In the absence of any randomised controlled trials or prospective case series, we sought trends for clinical presentation and management based on 60 patients from published literature over the last 15 years, as well as three patients from our experience, and categorised them into various subgroups according to the WHO classification for NETs. Well-differentiated NETs have an indolent course and better prognosis. Poorly differentiated neuroendocrine carcinomas, which may be of large-cell or small-cell type and may coexist with other types of carcinoma, have a poor outcome. A variety of surgical and chemotherapeutic approaches have been adopted. Surgical excision appears to prolong life, with chemotherapy perhaps adding a marginal advantage.

  • carcinoid
  • small-cell carcinoma
  • large-cell carcinoma
  • neuroendocrine tumour
  • gallbladder

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  • SI and TAM contributed equally to this work.

  • Funding: HMK is supported by a Clinician Scientist award from the Department of Health, UK.

  • Competing interests: None.