Nonepithelial malignant tumors of the pancreas are extremely rare neoplasms with a frequency of approximately 0.6%. They are always explored because of a suspected diagnosis of pancreatic carcinoma. Amongst the more than 600 primary pancreatic neoplasms in our pancreatic tumor archive only 5 neoplasms were of nonepithelial origin (one was a malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumor [MPNST], one a leiomyosarcoma, one a malignant mesothelioma, and two were peripheral neuroectodermal tumors [PNET]. The differential diagnosis includes secondary infiltration of the pancreas by mesenchymal tumors of the retroperitoneum, undifferentiated pancreatic carcinoma and, especially in the case of PNET, malignant lymphoma. Preoperative chemotherapy and down-staging can improve the operability and prognosis, especially in PNET.
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