Zollinger-Ellison syndrome is a condition in which the body produces too much of the hormone gastrin. Most of the time, a small tumor (gastrinoma) in the pancreas or small intestine is the source of the extra gastrin in the blood.
Z-E syndrome; Gastrinoma
Zollinger-Ellison syndrome is caused by tumors. These growths are most often found in the head of the pancreas and the upper small intestine. The tumors are called gastrinomas. High levels of gastrin cause production of too much stomach acid.
Gastrinomas occur as single tumors or several tumors. One half to two thirds of single gastrinomas are cancerous (malignant) tumors. These tumors often spread to the liver and nearby lymph nodes.
Many people with gastrinomas have several tumors as part of a condition called multiple endocrine neoplasia type I (MEN I). Tumors may develop in the pituitary gland (brain) and parathyroid gland (neck) as well as in the pancreas.
Symptoms may include:
Signs include ulcers in the stomach and small intestine.
Drugs called proton pump inhibitors (omeprazole, lansoprazole, and others) are used for treating this problem. These drugs reduce acid production by the stomach. This helps the ulcers in the stomach and small intestine heal. These medicines also relieve abdominal pain and diarrhea.
Surgery to remove a single gastrinoma may be done if the tumors have not spread to other organs. Surgery on the stomach (gastrectomy) to control acid production is rarely needed.
David Metz is a Gastroenterologist in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Dr. Metz has been practicing medicine for over 40 years and is rated as an Elite doctor by MediFind in the treatment of Zollinger-Ellison Syndrome. He is also highly rated in 24 other conditions, according to our data. His top areas of expertise are Zollinger-Ellison Syndrome, Pancreatic Islet Cell Tumor, Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease, and Indigestion. He is licensed to treat patients in Pennsylvania. Dr. Metz is currently accepting new patients.
Tetsuhide Ito is in Fukuoka, Japan. Ito is rated as an Elite expert by MediFind in the treatment of Zollinger-Ellison Syndrome. They are also highly rated in 27 other conditions, according to our data. Their top areas of expertise are Pancreatic Islet Cell Tumor, Zollinger-Ellison Syndrome, VIPoma, and Neuroendocrine Tumor.
Jeffrey Norton is a General Surgeon and a Surgical Oncologist in Palo Alto, California. Dr. Norton has been practicing medicine for over 49 years and is rated as an Elite doctor by MediFind in the treatment of Zollinger-Ellison Syndrome. He is also highly rated in 48 other conditions, according to our data. His top areas of expertise are Zollinger-Ellison Syndrome, Pancreatic Cancer, Multiple Endocrine Neoplasia Type 1, and Neuroendocrine Tumor. He is licensed to treat patients in California. Dr. Norton is currently accepting new patients.
The cure rate is low, even when it is found early and the tumor is removed. However, gastrinomas grow slowly. People with this condition may live for many years after the tumor is found. Acid-suppressing medicines work well to control the symptoms.
Complications may include:
Contact your health care provider if you have severe abdominal pain that does not go away, especially if it occurs with diarrhea.
Published Date : October 28, 2020
Published By : Michael M. Phillips, MD, Clinical Professor of Medicine, The George Washington University School of Medicine, Washington, DC. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.
Öberg K. Neuroendocrine tumors and related disorders. In: Melmed S, Auchus, RJ, Goldfine AB, Koenig RJ, Rosen CJ, eds. Williams Textbook of Endocrinology. 14th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2020:chap 45.
Strosberg JR, Al-Toubah T. Neuroendocrine tumors. In: Feldman M, Friedman LS, Brandt LJ, eds. Sleisenger and Fordtran's Gastrointestinal and Liver Disease. 11th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2021:chap 34.