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We have analysed the effects of 'curative' and palliative surgery and adjuvant therapy on actuarial 5 and 10 year survival in 97 local patients with primary small bowel malignancies presenting to five Glasgow teaching hospitals over a 15 year period. The 5 year survival rates in 18 patients with lymphoma undergoing 'curative' surgery was 48 per cent while in patients whose surgery was considered palliative the figure was 12 per cent (P less than 0.001). In the 29 patients with carcinoma, 17 had 'curative' surgery and 12 a palliative procedure with respective 5 year survival rates of 38 per cent and 0 per cent (P less than 0.01). In 16 patients with carcinoid tumours the surgeons' assessment of curative or palliative surgery was of little consequence with 51 per cent of the palliative group alive at 10 years. Mean survivals were increased in lymphoma patients in both 'curative' and palliative groups receiving adjuvant therapy but not significantly so. We suggest that all detectable macroscopic tumour, where possible, should be removed and that adjuvant therapy may be of benefit in all patients with lymphoma, even when surgery is considered 'curative'.

Original publication




Journal article


Br J Surg

Publication Date





826 - 828


Aged, Carcinoid Tumor, Carcinoma, Combined Modality Therapy, Humans, Intestinal Neoplasms, Lymphoma, Middle Aged, Neoplasm Metastasis, Palliative Care, Prognosis