These gastrin-secreting tumors, or gastrinomas, are found in the pancreas or duodenum. These tumors arise from neuroendocrine cells, and their excessive production of the hormone gastrin leads to overproduction of gastric acid.
Gastrinomas are neuroendocrine-derived tumors that secrete gastrin, leading to growth of gastric mucosa, and increased proliferation of stomach parietal cells. These cells proliferating cells produce an excess of gastric acid.
Due to excess acid production, recurrent ulcers occur in affected patients. These ulcers present most commonly in the proximal duodenum, and less commonly in the distal duodenum and jejunum. Furthermore, these are usually solitary ulcers. Patients may present with gastrointestinal bleeding as well.
Zollinger-Ellison Syndrome (ZES) gastrinomas can be sporadic and can occur without any other disease. However, an important correlation of this disease is that 25% of cases are associated with multiple endocrine neoplasia type 1 (MEN 1).
Patients with Zollinger-Ellison syndrome (ZES) commonly present with abdominal pain, which is a result of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) or ulcerations from gastric acid hypersecretion.
Heartburn is another common symptom seen in patients with Zollinger-Ellison syndrome (ZES). This occurs because of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) that develops from gastric acid hypersecretion.
As a result of excess acid secretion and malabsorption, patients often complain of bouts of diarrhea, which is often seen as a chronic symptom of Zollinger-Ellison syndrome (ZES).
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