Primary tuberculosis of the pancreas mimicking a pancreatic tumor
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Background. Diagnosis of tuberculosis of the pancreas is often missed, and may present to the clinician as a difficult diagnostic problem.
Methods. We report an extremely rare case of a 35-year-old woman who admitted for acute pain in the right upper quadrant, jaundice, fever 38°C and chills. During the last 8 mo, she developed increasing fatigue and a weight loss of approx 10 kg.
Results. Computed tomography (CT) of the abdomen showed a mass in the head of the pancreas, and upper gastrointestinal endoscopy revealed a stenosis of the second part of duodenum and a pancreatico-duodenum fistula. Frozen sections by direct trucut needle biopsy raised suspicions of a malignancy, and a Whipple procedure was performed as a radical procedure. The final histopathology revealed a chronic granulomatous lesion with caseating necrosis. Mycobacterium of tuberculosis was detected using the polymerase chain reaction-based assay.
Conclusion. This unusual case emphasizes that in suspected cases of pancreatic carcinoma with an atypical presentation, an attempt should be made to confirm the diagnosis by CT-guided needle biopsy, or by ultrasound endoscopic fine-needle aspiration.
Key WordsTuberculosis pancreas tumor pancreatic mass
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