Epidemiologic Data, Tumor Size, Histologic Tumor Type and Grade, Pathologic Staging and Follow Up in Cancers of the Ampullary Region and Head of Pancreas in 311 Whipple Resection Specimens of Pakistani Patients

  • Ahmad, Zubair (Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, Aga Khan University Hospital) ;
  • Ud Din, Nasir (Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, Aga Khan University Hospital) ;
  • Minhas, Khurram (Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, Aga Khan University Hospital) ;
  • Moeen, Sarosh (Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, Aga Khan University Hospital) ;
  • Ahmed, Arsalan (Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, Aga Khan University Hospital)
  • Published : 2015.12.03


Aim: To report the histologic findings on Whipple resection specimens and thus determine the extent and spread of carcinomas of ampullary region and head of pancreas in our population. Setting: Section of Histopathology, Department of Pathology, Aga Khan University Hospital (AKUH), Karachi, Pakistan. Materials and Methods: A case series of 311 consecutive Whipple resection specimens received between January 1,2003 and December 31, 2014. Specimens processed for histologic sections and representative sections submitted and histologically examined as per established and standard protocols. All relevant tumor parameters including histologic type, histologic grade, pathologic T and N stage and tumor size were assessed. Epidemiologic data were also recorded. All findings were analysed using SPSS 19.0 software. Results: Ampullary (periampullary) carcinomas were much more common than carcinomas of the head of the pancreas, especially in males, with an average age of 53 years. Mean tumor size was 2.5 cms, over 54% were well differentiated. A large majority were pT2 or pT3 and N0. Carcinomas of pancreatic head were also more common in males, mean age was 55 years, mean tumor size was 3.5cms, and over 65% were moderately differentiated. The majority were T2 or T3 and pN1. Prognostically, significant statistical correlation was seen with tumor grade and pathologic T and N stage (p values statistically significant). However, tumor size was not statistically significant. Conclusions: Ampullary carcinomas are more common compared to pancreatic carcinomas. Majority of ampullary carcinomas were well differentiated while majority of pancreatic carcinomas were moderately differentiated. Large majority of both types of cases were pT2 or T3. Histologic tumor grade and pathologic T and N stage are significantly related to prognosis in Pakistani patients with ampullary and pancreatic cancers.


Whipple resection;carcinoma of ampullary region;carcinoma of head of pancreas;tumor grade


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