Differential Diagnosis of Diarrhea in Patients with Neuroendocrine Tumors

Jennifer R. Eads, Diane Reidy-Lagunes, Heloisa P. Soares, Jennifer A. Chan, Lowell B. Anthony, Thorvardur R. Halfdanarson, Boris G. Naraev, Edward M. Wolin, Daniel M. Halperin, Daneng Li, Rodney F. Pommier, Jerome S. Zacks, Michael A. Morse, David C. Metz

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Patients with neuroendocrine tumors (NETs) and carcinoid syndrome experience diarrhea that can have a debilitating effect on quality of life. Diarrhea also may develop in response to other hormonal syndromes associated with NETs, surgical complications, medical comorbidities, medications, or food sensitivities. Limited guidance on the practical approach to the differential diagnosis of diarrhea in these patients can lead to delays in appropriate treatment. This clinical review and commentary underscore the complexity in identifying the etiology of diarrhea in patients with NETs. Based on our collective experience and expertise, we offer a practical algorithm to guide medical oncologists and other care providers to expedite effective management of diarrhea and related symptoms in patients with NETs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1123-1130
Number of pages8
Issue number9
StatePublished - Oct 2020


  • carcinoid syndrome
  • diagnostic algorithm
  • neuroendocrine tumor
  • osmolar gap
  • secretory diarrhea

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Hepatology
  • Endocrinology


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