Locoregional therapy-induced tumor necrosis as a predictor of recurrence after liver transplant in patients with hepatocellular carcinoma

Meng-Hsing Ho, Chih-Yung Yu, Kuo-Piao Chung, Teng-Wei Chen, Heng-Cheng Chu, Chih-Kung Lin, Chung-Bao Hsieh

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26 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) often undergo locoregional therapy before liver transplant either to downstage the tumor or as bridge therapy. Our goal was to assess the risk factors for posttransplant tumor recurrence, specifically the extent of necrosis induced by locoregional therapy. Methods: We conducted a hospital-based retrospective analysis of 100 patients with HCC who received a liver transplant, 86 of whom had received pretransplant locoregional therapy. We evaluated various patient- and tumor-related parameters to determine the risk factors for recurrence. Furthermore, we grouped patients by the degree of tumor necrosis after locoregional therapy and identified the factors that were associated with a favorable tumor response. Results: Initial tumor extent beyond the University of San Francisco (UCSF) criteria, microvascular invasion, and attainment of less than 90% tumor necrosis after locoregional therapy were independent risk factors for tumor recurrence. In addition, there was a significant correlation between the tumor necrosis percentage and disease-specific survival rate. Among patients whose tumors initially exceeded the UCSF criteria, those with extensive locoregional therapy-induced tumor necrosis had lower recurrence rates. All recurrences after transplant occurred within 3 years, and recurrence rates in patients with extensive tumor necrosis at 1, 2, and 3 years were 3%, 6%, and 10%, respectively. Female gender and a solitary tumor were independently associated with extensive tumor necrosis. Conclusions: In HCC patients who are transplant candidates and undergo pretransplant locoregional therapy, the degree of induced tumor necrosis affects both tumor recurrence and survival rate. © 2011 Society of Surgical Oncology.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3632-3639
Number of pages8
JournalAnnals of Surgical Oncology
Issue number13
Publication statusPublished - 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • adult
  • article
  • cancer invasion
  • cancer patient
  • cancer recurrence
  • female
  • gender
  • human
  • liver cell carcinoma
  • liver graft
  • local therapy
  • major clinical study
  • male
  • postoperative period
  • preoperative period
  • retrospective study
  • survival rate
  • tumor necrosis
  • Carcinoma, Hepatocellular
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Liver Neoplasms
  • Liver Transplantation
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local
  • Neoplasm Staging
  • Prognosis
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Survival Rate


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