Dr Henry Knipe et al.

VIPomas are a very rare pancreatic endocrine tumour that classically presents with watery diarrhoea and hypokalaemia. These tumours secrete, and get their name from, vasoactive intestinal peptide (VIP). 

VIPomas represent <2% of pancreatic endocrine tumours 2

Patients typically present with watery diarrhoea, hypokalaemia, and achlorhydria, which has been given the acronym WDHA 1.  

VIPomas are usually large (~5 cm) at presentation with most patient (~70%) having metastatic disease 3

  • intrapancreatic (~75%): most commonly in the pancreatic tail
  • extrapancreatic neurogenic (~20%): arising from the sympathetic chain
  • extrapancreatic non-neurogenic (~5%): arising in the oesophageal, bowel, liver, and kidney 3
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Article Information

rID: 42610
Section: Pathology
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • WDHA syndrome

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