Benign neoplasms of the ampulla of Vater are rare. Chu,1 in 1950, reported a case of an adenoma in the ampulla of Vater and reviewed the world literature of benign tumors within the extrahepatic biliary tree. He was able to collect only 29 documented examples up to that time. Since then, only a few additional reports have been added.2-9 While the majority of these tumors have been epithelial in origin, variously designated as papillomas, polyps, adenomas, and carcinoid tumors, such mesenchymal neoplasms as fibromas, lipomas, neuromas, leiomyomas, and granular-cell myoblastomas have been noted in this region.
Although almost all of these tumors involved the common duct or adjacent areas of the extrahepatic biliary tree, only eight of the neoplasms were adenomas or papillomas of the ampulla of Vater. These produced sufficient symptoms to warrant surgical intervention. In no instance was correct diagnosis made prior to operation.