Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

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Carcinoid Syndrome Anatomy

To better understand carcinoid syndrome, it helps to understand the anatomy of the gastrointestinal tract.

The intestine absorbs nutrients from food and liquids. The intestine is about 22 feet long in an adult. It includes the large intestine (colon) and the small intestine.

The large intestine is also known as the colon. It is the last portion of the intestine. The colon has several parts, including:

  • Ascending colon: the first section after the small intestine, located on the right side
  • Transverse colon: sits horizontally across the upper abdomen
  • Descending colon: located on the left side of the abdomen
  • Sigmoid: a short, S-shaped section above the rectum
  • Rectum: the lowest internal part of the colon

Intestinal anatomy:
  • Entire gastrointestinal tract
  • Intestines and other abdominal organs
  • Blood vessels of the intestines
  • The appendix is a small pouch that protrudes from the wall of the large intestine. It is located at the point where the small intestine turns into the large intestine.

Last Updated: Dec 7, 2010 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Carcinoid Syndrome References
  1. Ahlman H, Nilsson O, Olausson M. Interventional treatment of the carcinoid syndrome. Neuroendocrinology. 2004;80 Suppl 1:67-73. [15477721]
  2. Akerstrom G, Hellman P, Hessman O, Osmak L. Management of midgut carcinoids. J Surg Oncol. 2005 Mar 1;89(3):161-9. [15719373]
  3. Fox DJ, Khattar RS. Carcinoid heart disease: presentation, diagnosis, and management. Heart. 2004 Oct;90(10):1224-8. [15367531]
  4. Nikou GC, Lygidakis NJ, Toubanakis C, et al. Current diagnosis and treatment of gastrointestinal carcinoids in a series of 101 patients: the significance of serum chromogranin-A, somatostatin receptor scintigraphy and somatostatin analogues. Hepatogastroenterology. 2005 May-Jun;52(63):731-41. [15966194]
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