About this disease

What it is about

Small bowel tumors are very rare and usually cause symptoms only at a late stage. Risk factors for the development of small bowel cancer include chronic inflammatory bowel diseases such as Crohn's disease or celiac disease and a family history of the disease. It is also suspected that certain dietary habits may play a role.

Symptoms and consequences

Small intestinal tumors arise from degenerated intestinal tissue and are classified as adenocarcinomas. Symptoms appear late and are usually relatively unspecific. They range from general digestive complaints to nausea and vomiting to vague abdominal pain. In advanced stages, intestinal passage may be obstructed or there may even be intestinal obstruction.

What we do for you

Examination and diagnosis

If small bowel cancer is suspected, X-ray examinations such as computed tomography (CT) are performed first. This is followed by ultrasound examinations and, if necessary, gastroscopy. During gastroscopy, the small intestine is examined in more detail and tissue samples can be taken to determine whether the disease is actually cancerous. In the case of a passage obstruction or intestinal blockage, surgery is often performed as an emergency measure.


The treatment concept often consists of surgery, chemotherapy or radiation therapy. In surgery, the affected section of the small intestine is surgically removed, which often already leads to healing. In advanced disease, further drug treatment in the form of chemotherapy is usually necessary.

Responsible departments

Visceral surgery


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