Department of General Surgery, Peking Union Medical College Hospital, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences/Peking Union Medical College, Beijing 100730, China. firstname.lastname@example.org.
Predictors of poor prognosis of solitary hepatocellular carcinoma (SHCC), a subgroup encompassing most patients with the malignancy, are still controversial. Hence, risk factors for portal vein tumor thrombosis (PVTT) in SHCC are obscure. The present study was designed to address this issue.
Clinicopathological and follow-up data for 156 consecutive patients with SHCC following curative hepatic resection were analyzed using uni- and multi-variate analyses.
Univariate analysis showed that PVTT, tumor-node-metastasis (TNM) stage, Edmondson-Steiner grade and preoperative serum alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) level were associated with the overall and disease-free survival, whereas tumor size only influenced the overall survival. In multivariate Cox regression tests, Edmondson-Steiner grade and TNM stage were independent prognostic markers for both overall and disease-free survival. In addition, the Chi-square test showed that AFP level and Edmondson-Steiner grade were correlated with PVTT. Among them, only Edmondson-Steiner grade was shown to be of independent significance for PVTT in multi-variate logistic regression analysis. Additionally, AFP, the sole preoperative factor for PVTT, was not adequately sensitive and specific.
Factors relating to post-surgical prognosis and PVTT in SHCC are all tumor-related. Of these, Edmondson-Steiner grade and TNM stage might be of particular importance in survival analysis. In addition, accurate prediction of PVTT by clinicopathological parameters before surgery remains difficult.