Rarely amylase or lipase can be produced by a tumor as a paraneoplastic finding.


Tumors that have been associated with lipase or amylase production:

(1) small cell lung carcinoma

(2) non-small cell lung carcinoma

(3) neuroendocrine tumor


Clinical features:

(1) elevation of serum amylase or lipase

(2) exclusion of other sources of the enzymes (pancreatitis, salivary gland lesions, metastatic tumor to the pancreas)

(3) identification of a tumor capable of secreting amylase or lipase

(4) correlation between enzyme level and tumor burden (drop after treatment, rise with recurrence)


Both amylase and lipase should be monitored. The presence of both would tend to favor the diagnosis of pancreatitis.


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