Background: Gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GISTs) represent 85% of all mesenchymal neoplasms that affect the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. These GISTs range in size from small lesions to large masses. Often they are clinically silent until they reach a significant size, so their discovery is usually incidental.Case presentation: A 67-year-old man was admitted at our general surgery department with a persistent abdominal pain in the left hypochondrium, associated with nausea and vomiting. Clinical examination revealed a palpable mass in the epigastrium and in the left hypochondrium, which was approximately 40 cm long. Ultrasonography and computed tomography of the abdomen showed a large mass of 40 × 25 cm, which extended from the posterior wall of the stomach to the spleen, involving the body and the tail of the pancreas. The patient underwent en-block resection of the mass, sleeve resection of the stomach, and distal pancreatectomy-splenectomy. The histopathology of the resected specimen was consistent with a gastrointestinal stromal tumor of the stomach (positive for CD 117) with a high risk of malignancy (mitotic count >5/50 high-power fieldand Ki67/Mib1 >10%). The postoperative course was uneventful and treatment with imatinib mesylate began immediately. The patient appears to be disease free after four years.Conclusions: Giant GISTs of the stomach are rare. Surgical resection with curative intent is feasible. The combination of surgical resection and imatinib can provide long-termdisease-free survival. An R0 resection is the best achievable treatment, therefore the patient should be evaluated over time for potential resectability.
- Surgical management
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