The Center of Expertise for Neuroendocrine Tumors (EKPA-LAIKO NET Center) is part of the Endocrinology Unit of the 1st Department of Propaedeutic and Internal Medicine of the Medical School of National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Greece. The Center is located at General Hospital of Athens Laiko (G.H.A.).
The EKPA-LAIKO NET Center consists of a multidisciplinary team of several subspecialties dealing with patients harbouring a wide spectrum of neuroendocrine diseases such as:
- Neuroendocrine Tumors (Carcinoids) of the stomach, duodenum, small and large bowel, rectum, pancreas, appendix and lung
- Functioning (carcinoid syndrome, insulinoma, gastrinoma, vipoma) and non-functioning neuroendocrine tumors
- Multiple Endocrine Neoplasia Type 1 (MEN 1) and other familial syndromes such as neurofibromatosis type 1, Von Hippel Lindau (VHL), MEN 2, Familial Isolated Pituitary Adenomas (FIPA), familial pheochromocytoma and paraganglioma
The EKPA-LAIKO NET Center successfully applied as a European Neuroendocrine Tumor Society (ENETS) Center of Excellence (CoE) in 2016 and was certified in March 2017 following external assessment. Overall, more than 1000 patients with neuroendocrine tumors (NET) are followed in the department. More than 100 new patients with gastro-entero-pancreatic NET (GEP-NET) are seen in the center per year while the number of new patients increases constantly by 10-20% annually.
Lead and coordinator of the EKPA-LAIKO NET Center is Professor Gregory Kaltsas who is also a member of the ENETS advisory board and participates in the preparation and development of international guidelines regarding patients with NETs. Responsible for the control to adhere the existing guidelines is Professor Gregory Kaltsas.
The Center has the required infrastructure which includes signed contracts among all relevant disciplines as per ENETS requirements, including the main partners (Endocrinology, Surgery, Oncology, Gastroenterology, Nuclear Medicine, Radiology and Histopathology). Secondary partners include Cardiology, Nutrition Service, Psychological Services and others. All partners have more than 5 years of experience in the field of NET and follow standard operation procedures (SOP) as per ENETS requirements (see Neuroendocrinology 2012, Standards of Care in NET released in ENETS Consensus conference in Palma, Mallorca).
The EKPA-LAIKO NET Center participates in national and international trials on NET patients and has published multiple original research and review papers in international medical journals. In addition, is in close collaboration with other ENETS centers.
A multidisciplinary team meeting (oncological board) is held every 10-15 days in which all related specialties participate and all new cases as well as patients who show disease progression (worsening) or need discussion for other reasons (such as side effects of the treatment) are discussed. After each meeting a report is issued for the patients discussed which includes a brief history of the patient and the board decision.