Preventing and Detecting Neuroendocrine Tumors

Cancer screening

Screening tests detect cancer’s hidden warning signs long before symptoms appear and when the disease is most treatable. Understand your screening needs and complete the cancer screening and prevention questionnaire to manage your cancer risk.

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The cause of neuroendocrine tumors remains unclear, and so strategies to prevent the disease are difficult to conclude. However, certain known genetic and medical conditions are associated with several cancer types, including NETs. These include:

  • Genetic syndromes such as MEN type 1, MEN type 2 and Von Hippel-Landau syndrome
  • Genetic disorders associated with multiple tumors, such as tuberous sclerosis and neurofibromatosis
  • Conditions that affect stomach acid, such as atrophic gastritis, pernicious anemia and Zollinger-Ellison syndrome

If you have one of these risk factors, your doctor may watch you closely. If your risk appears to be extremely high, your doctor may choose to remove an organ, such as the thyroid, to prevent a neuroendocrine tumor from growing there. It’s important to know your family’s cancer history and discuss it with your doctor. Certain cancer types and patterns of cancer in your family may indicate you should consider genetic screening to learn whether you have an increased risk for cancer.

The Roswell Park Advantage — the NET Biobank

Understanding how a cancer begins and grows is an important first step toward fighting and preventing it. But for rare cancers like NETs, research advances are more difficult because scientists have far fewer cases to study. In establishing the Neuroendocrine Tumor Biobank, Roswell Park aims to assemble the nation’s largest collection of NET cases — including biospecimens, such as tumor and blood samples plus patient medical and lifestyle information — to speed NET-focused research and lead to new treatment and preventive strategies. Learn how you can be a part of the Roswell Park Neuroendocrine Tumor Biobank.