BACKGROUND: Various methods have been reported for the endoscopic treatment of rectal carcinoid tumors. The present study was designed to identify the optimal treatment strategy for an endoscopic resection.
METHODS: Forty rectal carcinoid tumors of 38 patients were treated endoscopically. The indication criteria, complete resection rate, selection of treatment, local recurrence, distant metastases, and complications were analyzed. All tumors were estimated to measure 1 cm or less in diameter, without muscular invasion, atypical features, and lymph node metastases to the pararectal region.
RESULTS: Complete resection of the lesions was obtained in 75.0% (30/40). The complete resection rates were 20.0% (1/5) by conventional polypectomy, 84.6% (22/26) by a two-channel endoscopic mucosal resection, and 77.8% (7/9) by endoscopic submucosal dissection. The 10 cases that did not show a clear submucosal layer after initial endoscopic treatment received additional endoscopic microwave coagulation therapy. There were no local or distant recurrences in the followed-up periods (median, 6.4 years). No difference was observed in the complete resection rate between two-channel endoscopic mucosal resection and endoscopic submucosal dissection.
CONCLUSIONS: Small carcinoid tumors measuring less than 1 cm in diameter can therefore be managed endoscopically with no recurrence or spread. The selection of endoscopic treatment should be made after taking such factors as cost-effectiveness, expertise, and experience into careful consideration.