ABSTRACT: Chemotherapy may improve survival in patients undergoing resection of colorectal liver metastases (CLM). Neoadjuvant chemotherapy may help identify patients with occult extrahepatic disease (averting unnecessary metastasectomy), and it provides in vivo chemosensitivity data.
A phase II trial was initiated in which patients with resectable CLM received CPT-11, 5-FU and LV for 12 weeks. Metastasectomy was performed unless extrahepatic disease appeared. Postoperatively, patients with stable or responsive disease received the same regimen for 12 weeks. Patients with progressive disease received either second-line chemotherapy or best supportive care. The primary endpoint was disease-free survival (DFS); secondary endpoints included overall survival (OS) and safety.
35 patients were accrued. During preoperative chemotherapy, 16 patients (46%) had grade 3/4 toxicities. Resection was not possible in 5 patients. One patient died of arrhythmia following surgery, and 1 patient had transient liver failure. During the postoperative treatment phase, 12 patients (55%) had grade 3/4 toxicities. Deep venous thrombosis (DVT) occurred in 11 patients (34%) at various times during treatment. Of those who underwent resection, median DFS was 23.0 mo. and median OS has not been reached. The overall survival from time of diagnosis of liver metastases was 51.6 mo for the entire cohort.
A short course of chemotherapy prior to hepatic metastasectomy may serve to select candidates best suited for resection and it may also direct postoperative systemic treatment. Given the significant incidence of DVT, alternative systemic neoadjuvant regimens should be investigated, particularly those that avoid the use of a central venous line.
BMC Cancer 06/2009; 9:156. · 3.01 Impact Factor