Article Abstract

Postoperative adjuvant transarterial chemoembolization for multinodular hepatocellular carcinoma within the Barcelona Clinic Liver Cancer early stage and microvascular invasion

Authors: Han Wang, Peng-Cheng Du, Meng-Chao Wu, Wen-Ming Cong


Background: The survival benefit of postoperative adjuvant transcatheter arterial chemoembolization (PA-TACE) remained controversial. We aimed to investigate the prognosis effect of PA-TACE on the Barcelona Clinic Liver Cancer (BCLC) early stage multinodular hepatocellular carcinoma (MHCC) patients with/without microvascular invasion (MVI).
Methods: Two hundred and seventy-one patients from January 2010 to December 2014 undergoing curative hepatectomy were included in this study. Disease-free survival (DFS) rates and overall survival (OS) rates as well as prognostic factors were analyzed by the Kaplan-Meier method, the log-rank test and the Cox proportional hazard model.
Results: Thirty-four point four percent (44/128) MVI positive and 55.2% (79/143) MVI negative patients underwent PA-TACE. Multivariate analysis revealed that HBV DNA load >103 copy/mL, >three tumors, MVI, and without PA-TACE were independent risk factors for poor DFS. Higher alkaline phosphatase (ALP), three tumors, MVI, and without PA-TACE were independent risk factors for poor OS. Both DFS and OS were significantly improved in patients with MVI who received PA-TACE as compared to those who underwent hepatic resection alone (5-year DFS, 26.3% vs. 20.7%, P=0.038; 5-year OS, 73.6% vs. 47.7%, P=0.005). No differences were noted in DFS and OS among MVI negative patients with or without PA-TACE (5-year DFS, 33.7% vs. 33.0%, P=0.471; 5-year OS, 84.1% vs. 80.3%, P=0.523). Early recurrence was more likely to occur in patients without PA-TACE (P=0.001).
Conclusions: PA-TACE was a safe intervention and could effectively prevent tumor recurrence and improve the survival of the BCLC early stage MHCC patients with MVI.