Source Department of Gastroenterological Surgery, Cancer Institute Hospital, Japanese Foundation for Cancer Research, 3-8-31 Ariake, Koto-ku, Tokyo, 135-8500, Japan, firstname.lastname@example.org.
PURPOSE: Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) usually recurs repeatedly and locoregional treatment is attempted unless liver function has deteriorated. This study was aimed to evaluate the effect of repeated treatment on patient prognosis.
METHODS: The HCC recurrence pattern and types of treatment for recurrence after hepatic resection were reviewed in 134 patients. The effects of repeated treatment on prognosis were evaluated. Univariate and multivariate analyses were performed to determine the prognostic predictors after initial recurrence.
RESULTS: Median number of treatments after recurrence was 3 (range, 0-12). Transarterial chemoembolization was the most common treatment. The number of treatments, but not the type of treatment, was associated with the prognosis. Multivariate analysis showed that a >20% indocyanine green retention rate at 15 min (hazard ratio [HR] = 2.65; 95% confidential interval [CI], 1.53-5.62), size of primary tumor >5 cm (HR = 1.81; 95% CI, 1.05-3.08), recurrence-free interval <1 year (HR = 2.17; 95% CI, 1.28-3.81), size of recurrent tumor >3 cm (HR = 2.61; 95% CI, 1.03-5.77-0.95), and extrahepatic recurrence (HR = 6.35; 95% CI, 3.49-11.39) were independent predictors of poor survival.
CONCLUSION: The prognosis after recurrence is poor in cases with large tumors or poor liver function. Repeated locoregional treatment contributes to prolong patient prognosis, especially in cases with a small tumor size, long recurrence-free interval, and no extrahepatic metastases.