Type I Neurofibromatosis (NF1) is an autosomal-dominant inheritable disorder, with an incidence of 1:3,000, and a prevalence of 1:4,000 to 5,000. Pathogenesis is based on mutations of the NF1 gene, a tumor suppressor gene encoding a cytoplasmic protein named neurofibromin that controls cellular proliferation. Patients affected by NF1 typically present with cutaneous neurofibromas, cafè au lait spots and eye involvement, but they can also be affected by various visceral tumors, such as neurofibromas (nodular or plexiform type), gastrointestinal stromal tumors or endocrine tumors, such as pheochromocytomas. Visceral neurofibromas are often asymptomatic but when growing in size they may present with pain, palpable abdominal mass, symptoms secondary to bowel obstruction or main vessels compression, and even gastrointestinal bleeding when mucosa or submucosa are involved. In these cases surgery becomes mandatory in order to remove all neoplastic tissue.
The Authors describe a case of a young man affected by NF1 with associated retrocaval abdominal mass with compression and displacement of the inferior vena cava, thus requiring a complex surgical procedure.
KEY WORDS: Neurofibromatosis - Abdominal mass - Surgery.