Systematic review and meta-analysis of observational studies on BD-IPMNS progression to malignancy
The vast majority of presumed branch-duct intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasms (BD-IPMNs) of the pancreas are referred to a surveillance program due to the relatively low risk of malignancy. We aim to evaluate all available data from observational studies focused on the risks of BD-IPMN progression and malignancy to provide vital insights into its management in clinical practice.
A comprehensive search was conducted at PubMed, Cochrane, Web of Science and Embase for observational studies published before January 1st, 2020. The progression of BD-IPMN was defined as the development of worrisome features (WFs) or high-risk stigmata (HRS) during surveillance. Overall malignancy was defined as all malignancies, such as malignant IPMN, concomitant pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) and other malignancies, including BD-IPMN with high-grade sec. Baltimore consensus 2015 or BD-IPMN with high-grade dysplasia (carcinoma in situ) sec. WHO 2010. A meta-analysis was performed to investigate the presence of a mural nodule as a possible predictor of malignancy.
Twenty-four studies were included, with a total of 8941 patients with a presumed BD-IPMN. The progression rate was 20.2%, and 11.8% underwent surgery, 29.5% of whom showed malignancy at the final pathology. Of those, 78% had malignant IPMNs, and 22% had concomitant pancreatic cancer. Overall, 0.5% had distant metastasis. The meta-analysis showed that the risk of malignancy in the presence of a mural nodule >5 mm had a RR of 5.457 (95% CI 1.404–21.353), while a nonenhancing mural nodule or an enhancing mural nodule < 5 mm had a RR of 5.286 (95% CI 1.805–15.481) of harboring malignancy.
Most presumed BD-IPMNs entering surveillance do not become malignant. Of those submitted to surgery, concomitant PDAC adds to the overall risk of detecting malignancy.