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Neuroblastoma metastatic to the liver in infants.
  1. J V Bond

    Abstract

    Four infants are described who presented with rapid enlargement of the liver. This was found to be due to neuroblastoma which had metastasized to the liver; the condition was associated with high levels of urinary vanillylmandelic acid (VMA). In 3 infants the primary tumour was in the adrenal gland and in one it was not identified. One infant died after laparotomy and 2 infants survive disease free with normal VMA levels, one after adrenalectomy and hepatic irradiation and one after a short course of chemotherapy. The fourth patient responded initially to hepatic irradiation and chemotherapy, but relapsed 2 years later with recurrent disease; at the same time the VMA level which had been normal, again rose. The importance of screening for an abnormal VMA level in any infant with a rapidly enlarging liver in order to obtain an early diagnosis is stressed. Careful follow-up, with serial VMA estimations, is essential to detect recurrent disease. The prognosis for some infants with this distribution of neuroblastoma which has metastasized to the liver, but not to the bones or oribt, is good.

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