Non-functioning Neuroendocrine Tumors

A growing number of patients are being diagnosed with neuroendocrine tumors that do not produce a clinical syndrome caused by hormone production from the tumor. These patients are considered to have "nonfunctional tumors."

These nonfunctional tumors present with non-specific clinical manifestations such as abdominal pain or weight loss. In some patients the tumors are detected by chance when the patient has a computerized axial tomography (CAT) scan for another indication.

A CAT scan is often used to evaluate the primary tumor and to assess for spread to other organs (metastases). When removable, surgery is often the treatment of choice.