Source Service d'Hépato-Gastroentérologie, CHRU Lille, France. Service de Médecine Interne et d'Oncologie Médicale, CHRU Lille, France. Service de Radiologie, CHRU Lille, France. CTRS-INSERM U795, CHRU Lille, France. Service de Chirurgie Digestive et Transplantation, CHRU Lille, France.
Background Sorafenib increases median survival and time to radiological progression in patients with advanced hepatocellular carcinoma, but its benefit for Child-Pugh B patients remains uncertain. Aim To evaluate the safety and efficacy of sorafenib in real-life clinical practice conditions and to assess the influence of Child-Pugh class B on safety and efficacy.
Methods All patients treated with sorafenib for advanced hepatocellular carcinoma in our institution were included prospectively. Adverse events, overall survival and time to progression were recorded. A case control study was performed to compare outcome of patients with comparable stages of hepatocellular carcinoma, but a different Child-Pugh class.
Results From March 2007 to May 2009, 120 patients were included. Overall survival was 11.1 months, Child-Pugh A patients (n = 100) had significantly higher median survival than Child-Pugh B patients (n = 20) (13 vs. 4.5 months, P = 0.0008). In multivariate analysis, Child-Pugh class B, α-fetoprotein level and total size of lesions were independent predictive factors of death. Patients with radiological progression in the first 3 months had shorter median survival (5.4 vs. 17.4 months). In a case control study, time to symptomatic progression (2.5 vs. 3.6 months), frequency of adverse events and discontinuation of sorafenib were not correlated with Child-Pugh class.
Conclusions Patients with advanced hepatocellular carcinoma treated with sorafenib had a median survival of 11 months. Sorafenib therapy must be considered with caution in Child-Pugh B patients due to their poor survival. Radiological assessment of tumour progression at an early stage may be advantageous when tailoring sorafenib therapy.