Indexed on: 09 May '08Published on: 09 May '08Published in: World Journal of Surgery
Few details of the clinical features of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) developing extrahepatic recurrence after a curative resection have been published. The purpose of this study was to clarify the clinicopathologic findings of patients with HCC who experienced extrahepatic metastases.Clinicopathologic data were available for 119 patients who underwent an R0 resection for HCC. Twenty-three patients who developed extrahepatic metastases during the follow-up period were compared with the patients who remained free from recurrence for at least 5 years after resection (n = 21) or with only intrahepatic recurrences (n = 75).Patients with extrahepatic recurrences were more likely to have their tumor macro- or microscopically invading the tumor capsule (P < 0.001) and hepatic vein (P = 0.003), a high AFP concentration (P = 0.014), and advanced TNM stage (P = 0.006) than the other patients. As for treatment-related variables, inflow vessel occlusion during hepatectomy was less frequently associated with extrahepatic recurrences than if it were not performed (P < 0.001). By multivariate analysis, absence of tumor invasion to the capsule (relative risk [RR] = 0.080; P = 0.023) or to the hepatic vein (RR = 0.108; P = 0.014) and a hepatectomy in which inflow vessel occlusions were performed (RR = 0.161; P = 0.004) were selected as independent factors for reducing extrahepatic recurrences after a hepatectomy.In HCC patients, the control of intrahepatic recurrences and extrahepatic recurrences after a hepatectomy is important to improve the prognosis. Inflow occlusion during the hepatectomy may reduce HCC metastases to extrahepatic sites.