Safety, Diagnostic Accuracy, and Effects of Endoscopic Ultrasound Fine-Needle Aspiration on Detection of Extravascular Migratory Metastases

Tarun Rustagi, Ferga C. Gleeson, Suresh T. Chari, Heidi D. Lehrke, Naoki Takahashi, Thomas M. Malikowski, Barham K. Abu Dayyeh, Vinay Chandrasekhara, Prasad G. Iyer, Michael L. Kendrick, Randall K. Pearson, Bret T. Petersen, Elizabeth Rajan, Rory L. Smoot, Andrew C. Storm, Mark D. Topazian, Mark J. Truty, Santhi S. Vege, Kenneth K. Wang, Michael J. Levy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Background & Aims: Tumor cells can migrate via diminutive perivascular cuffing to distant sites along blood vessels to form extravascular migratory metastases (EVMM). These metastases usually are identified during surgery or autopsies. We aimed to evaluate the feasibility and safety of endoscopic ultrasound fine-needle aspiration (EUS-FNA) of perivascular soft-tissue cuffs to detect EVMM. We compared findings from EUS with those from noninvasive cross-sectional imaging (reference standard) of patients who underwent EUS-FNA to assess suspected EVMM and studied the effects on pancreatic tumor staging and determination of resectability. Methods: We performed a retrospective analysis of 253 patients (mean age, 62 ± 12 y) who underwent EUS-FNA of 267 vessels for evaluation of suspected EVMM, from April 2001 through May 2018. EUS findings were compared with those from computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) as the reference standard. Lesions were considered to be malignant based on cytology analysis of FNA samples, histology analyses of surgical or biopsy specimens, or vascular abnormalities detected by CT or MRI that clearly indicate EVMM. Results: Thirty patients were found to have benign lesions. The remaining 223 patients who had malignancies (166 with pancreatic ductal adenocarcinomas [PDACs]), underwent further analyses. A median of 4 FNAs (range, 1–20 FNAs) were obtained from 4-mm perivascular soft-tissue cuffs (range, 2–20 mm). FNA and cytology analysis showed malignant cells in 163 vessels (69.4%) from 157 patients (70.4%). CT or MRI did not detect EVMM in 44 patients (28%) with malignancies, including 24 patients (24%) with newly diagnosed PDAC. Detection of EVMM by EUS-FNA resulted in upstaging of 15 patients and conversion of 14 patients with PDAC from resectable (based on CT or MRI) to unresectable. No adverse events were reported during a follow-up period of 3.9 months (range, 0–117 mo). Conclusions: EUS-FNA and cytologic analysis of perivascular soft-tissue cuffs can detect EVMM that were not found in 28% of patients by CT or MRI. Detection of EVMM affects tumor staging and determination of tumor resectability.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2533-2540.e1
JournalClinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology
Issue number12
StatePublished - Nov 2019


  • Diagnosis
  • PSTC
  • Predicted Outcome
  • Prognostic Factor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hepatology
  • Gastroenterology


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