Treatment of metastatic paraganglioma: experience of a single center

David Veríssimo, Catarina Regala, Inês Damásio, Sofia Santos, Sara Donato, Valeriano Leite

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: Data regarding treatment options and their efficacy for metastatic paragangliomas (mPPGL) is limited. This study aims to report a single center experience in treating mPPGL, comparing the efficacy and safety of various treatment approaches. Methods: Retrospective analysis of patients with mPPGL treated at an Endocrinology Department of a cancer institute between January 2000 and October 2022. Results: We analyzed 25 patients with mPPGL, 8 pheochromocytomas and 20 paragangliomas (12% multifocal), followed for a median of 9 [4; 14] years. Surgical approach, aimed at the primary tumor or at debulking of metastases, was the only treatment achieving complete response: 87% in primary tumor and 87.5% with debulking of metastases. These were long-lasting results with a duration of 69 (23.8; 136.8) months in primary tumor removal and 35.1 (15.3; 41) months in metastases debulking. As for other therapeutic approaches, such as radioactive isotopes, tyrosine kinase inhibitors, chemotherapy and external beam radiotherapy, the main outcome was stable disease, with few partial responses. At the last follow-up, 66% of the patients were alive, 15.4% were in remission and 84.6% had stable disease. Median overall survival was 14 years. The 5-year and 10-year survival rates from primary tumor diagnosis were 77.9% and 66.9% respectively, and from metastasis diagnosis were 67.4% and 55.6%, respectively. Conclusion: This is the only European single center analysis addressing outcomes of different therapies in mPGL. The results support surgery as a first-line treatment, being the only approach that may achieve complete response with satisfactory and long-lasting results.

Original languageEnglish
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 2024


  • Metastases
  • Paraganglioma
  • Pheochromocytoma
  • Treatment


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