Advertisement

Population-Based Study Finds Patients With Gastrointestinal Tumors at Higher Risk of Other Cancers

Advertisement

Key Points

  • Patients with GIST had a 44% increased prevalence of cancers occurring before a GIST diagnosis and a 66% higher risk of developing cancers after diagnosis.
  • The most common tumors were those of the genitourinary tract, breast, respiratory system, and blood.
  • Patients with tumors smaller than 2 cm had the greatest likelihood of developing additional malignancies, both before and after diagnosis.

Researchers at the University of California (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 results, published by Murphy et al in Cancer, indicate that 1 in 5.8 patients with GIST will develop additional malignancies before and after their diagnosis.

Range of Other Tumor Types

Specifically, patients with GIST are more likely to develop other sarcomas, non-Hodgkin lymphoma, carcinoid tumors, melanoma, colorectal, esophageal, pancreatic, hepatobiliary, non–small cell lung, prostate, and renal cell cancers.

“Only 5% of patients with gastrointestinal stromal tumors have a hereditary disorder that predisposes them to develop multiple benign and malignant tumors,” said Jason K. Sicklick, MD, Assistant Professor of Surgery and UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center Surgical Oncologist. “The research indicates that these patients may develop cancers outside of these syndromes, but the exact mechanisms are not yet known.”

The researchers said further studies are needed to understand the connection between GIST and other cancers, but the findings may have clinical implications.

“Patients diagnosed with gastrointestinal stromal tumors may warrant consideration for additional screenings based on the other cancers that they are most susceptible to contract,” said coauthor James D. Murphy, MD, Assistant Professor of Radiation Oncology and UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center Radiation Oncologist.

Study Findings

Compared to the U.S. population, people with GIST had a 44% increased prevalence of cancers occurring before a GIST diagnosis, and a 66% higher risk of developing cancers after diagnosis. The most common tumors were those of the genitourinary tract, breast, respiratory system, and blood.

Non-Hispanic patients had a higher incidence of other cancers before a GIST diagnosis. Patients whose tumors were smaller than 10 cm had a higher probability of a second cancer than patients whose growth was larger. People with tumors smaller than 2 cm had the greatest likelihood of developing additional malignancies, both before and after diagnosis.

Dr. Sicklick is the corresponding author for the Cancer article.

This study was supported by the National Institutes of Health, the GIST Research Fund, and the UC San Diego Academic Senate (Health Sciences).

The content in this post has not been reviewed by the American Society of Clinical Oncology, Inc. (ASCO®) and does not necessarily reflect the ideas and opinions of ASCO®.


Advertisement

Advertisement



Advertisement