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ABSTRACT: Osteopontin (OPN) is overexpressed in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) with postoperative recurrence or extrahepatic metastasis. However, its prognostic value in patients treated with transarterial chemoembolization (TACE) is unclear. We investigated the utility of serum OPN levels and changes therein as prognostic markers in HCC patients who have received TACE.
Forty-six patients with HCC were enrolled. Serum OPN levels were measured before and 4 weeks after TACE. Serum biochemistry and computed tomography (CT) scans were analyzed. We evaluated baseline serum OPN levels and subsequent changes therein in relation to tumor responses and cumulative survival rates following TACE. A decreasing pattern was defined as a decrease after TACE of more than 10% relative to baseline levels. A "responder" was defined as a patient who exhibited a tumor necrosis rate of higher than 50% on the follow-up CT scan.
Higher initial serum OPN levels were associated with a large tumor, portal vein invasion, and an advanced tumor stage. Patients who had lower initial serum OPN levels and those who exhibited decreasing patterns after TACE tended to have more favorable tumor responses (P=0.043 and 0.055, respectively) and exhibited better cumulative survival rates (P=0.036 and 0.030, respectively). However, the initial serum OPN level and subsequent changes in serum OPN levels were not independent predictors for survival on multivariate analysis.
Serum OPN levels were significantly higher in patients with advanced HCC. In addition, HCC patients with low pretreatment serum OPN levels and those for whom serum OPN declined following TACE exhibited better tumor responses and survived for longer.
The Korean Journal of Hepatology 09/2009; 15(3):320-30.
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ABSTRACT: Spontaneous bacterial peritonitis (SBP) is one of the potentially life-threatening complications for patients with liver cirrhosis, and it has a mortality rate of over 20%. Early diagnosis of SBP and immediate use of an adequate antibiotic therapy are very important for achieving a better prognosis. The aim of our study was to assess the usefulness of reagent strips for making the rapid diagnosis of SBP.
A diagnostic paracentesis procedure was performed upon hospital admission in 257 cirrhotic patients (187 males, 70 females; mean age: 54 years) with ascites. Each fresh sample of ascitic fluid was tested using a reagent strip, and the result was scored as 0, 1+, 2+ or 3+. The leukocyte count, polymorphonuclear cell count, blood bottle culture, and chemistry of ascites were also done.
We diagnosed 79 cases of SBP and 2 cases of secondary bacterial peritonitis by means of the polymorphonuclear cell count and the classical criteria. When a reagent strip result of 3+ was considered positive, the test's sensitivity was 86% (70 of 81), the specificity was 100% (176 of 176), and the positive predictive value was 94%. Furthermore, when a reagent strip result of 2+ or more was considered positive, the test sensitivity was 100% (81 of 81), the specificity was 99% (174 of 176), and negative predictive value was 99%.
The use of reagent strips is a very sensitive and specific tool for the rapid diagnosis of SBP in cirrhotic patients. A positive result should be an indication for empirical antibiotic therapy, and a negative result may be useful as a screening test to exclude SBP.
The Korean Journal of Hepatology 10/2005; 11(3):243-9.
Gastrointestinal Endoscopy 06/2004; 59(6):696-7. · 5.21 Impact Factor