Kim JH, Sinn DH, Shin SW et al.
Department of Medicine, Samsung Medical Center, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
Clinical and molecular hepatology. Mar 2017.
We investigated the outcomes of early-stage hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) patients who showed a complete response (CR) to initial transarterial chemoembolization (TACE), with a focus on the role of scheduled TACE repetition.A total of 178 patients with early-stage HCC who were initially treated with TACE and showed a CR based on the modified Response Evaluation Criteria in Solid Tumors (mRECIST) criteria on one month follow-up computed tomography (CT) were analyzed. Among them, 90 patients underwent scheduled repetition of TACE in the absence of viable tumor on CT.During a median follow-up period of 4.6 years (range: 0.4-8.8 years), mortality was observed in 71 patients (39.9%). The overall recurrence-free and local recurrence-free survival rates at 1 year were 44.4% and 56.2%. In the multivariable model, scheduled repetition of TACE was an independent factor associated with survival (hazard ratio [95% confidence interval]: 0.56 [0.34-0.93], P=0.025). When stratified using Barcelona clinic liver cancer (BCLC) stage, scheduled repetition of TACE was associated with a favorable survival rate in BCLC stage A patients, but not in BCLC 0 patients.Scheduled repetition of TACE was associated with better survival for early-stage HCC patients showing a CR after initial TACE, especially in BCLC stage A patients.