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Summary

Background : Somatostatin analogues are the best therapy for controlling the symptoms of malignant carcinoid syndrome. Octreotide acetate given as subcutaneous injection up to three times daily, intramuscular Lanreotide injection given once per 1–2 weeks and monthly intramuscular Sandostatin LAR have demonstrated similar efficacy in short-term studies.

Aim : To assess the long-term effect of Sandostatin LAR on the management of patients with malignant carcinoid syndrome.

Methods : This was a 3-year retrospective study. Twenty-seven patients were assessed with a median follow-up of 23 months. Thirteen patients were switched from subcutaneous octreotide and 14 patients were octreotide naive. All patients showed avid uptake on indium-111 octreotide imaging.

Results : Ten of the 13 patients previously on subcutaneous octreotide and 13 of the 14 patients who were octreotide naive had good symptom control on Sandostatin LAR. Over the period of follow-up, many patients showed progression of their tumour and required additional therapies. Patients expressed a preference for monthly intramuscular Sandostatin LAR as opposed to daily subcutaneous injections of octreotide. Although Sandostatin LAR was difficult to administer in certain instances, overall it was well tolerated.

Conclusions : Sandostatin LAR provides good long-term symptomatic control in patients with malignant carcinoid syndrome; it is well tolerated and patients expressed improved satisfaction in their management.