Metastatic tumours in the gastrointestinal tract are infrequent findings and usually represent advanced disease at the time of their diagnosis. In these cases, radical surgical resection is rarely possible due to dissemination, but palliative surgery can be relatively effective. Operative treatment can be indicated as a life saving measure in patients with gastrointestinal bleeding, perforation or obstruction. Radical resection of metastases may prolong survival, if R0 resection is achieved. In these disease free patients, the surgical treatment should be tailored to the primary tumour and combined with neoadjuvant or adjuvant therapy. 1053 gastrointestinal tumours were treated surgically by the authors between 01.01.2000. and 31.12.2005. Of those, secondary tumours were found in 24 cases in the gastrointestinal tract (11 in the stomach, nine in the small bowel and four in the large bowel). The authors summarize their experience and review the relevant literature.
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