Prognosis of hepatocellular carcinoma

Barcelona-Clinic Liver Cancer (BCLC) Group, Liver Unit, Institut de Malalties Digestives, Hospital Clinic Institut d'Investigacions Biomèdiques August Pi i Sunyer (IDIBAPS), University of Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain.
Hepato-gastroenterology (Impact Factor: 0.93). 11/2001; 49(43):7-11.
Source: PubMed


The prognosis of patients with hepatocellular carcinoma is related to the stage of the tumor at diagnosis and to the degree of liver function impairment induced either by the tumor itself or by the underlying cirrhosis. Any prognostic prediction should also take into account the potential impact of therapeutic interventions. Only surgical resection, liver transplantation and percutaneous ablation achieve a relatively high rate of complete responses in patients with tumors diagnosed at an early stage and may improve survival. By contrast, patients diagnosed at an advanced stage will receive palliative treatment with unproven survival benefits. Each stage and each treatment have their specific prognostic predictors. Thus, the most accurate prognostic system will have to use a specific model for each strata at which patients may be diagnosed: early, intermediate-advanced and terminal. Patients at an early stage may achieve a 5-year survival rate above 50%, those at intermediate-advanced present a 20-50% survival at 3 years and those at terminal stage die within six months. In addition to predicting prognosis, the staging system should also guide the selection of treatment and this is the major advantage of the classification applied in the Barcelona-Clinic Liver Cancer Group.

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    • "It is also the seventh most commonly diagnosed cancer and sixth greatest cause of cancer-associated mortality in females worldwide (1). Prognosis for terminal-stage HCC is poor, and the majority of patients succumb to the disease within six months (2). Spontaneous regression of cancer is defined as a partial or complete disappearance of malignant tumors in the absence of specific treatment (3). "
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    ABSTRACT: Spontaneous regression of cancer is a partial or complete disappearance of malignant tumor without specific treatment. Spontaneous regression of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is a rare condition, and the mechanism underlying it is unclear. This report presents a rare case of spontaneous complete regression of HCC, as revealed by tumor markers and imaging studies. A 64-year-old Korean male patient with hepatitis B virus-associated chronic hepatitis presented with HCC. The patient had undergone right lobectomy of the liver but the cancer recurred with multiple lung and adrenal metastases after 14 months. The patient received palliative cytotoxic chemotherapy. However, there was no clinical benefit and the disease progressed. It was decided to discontinue anticancer therapy and administer only supportive care. After approximately six months, the symptoms disappeared and the HCC had completely regressed. The patient remains alive over five years after recurrence.
    Full-text · Article · Apr 2014 · Oncology letters
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    • "Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is one of the most common cancers worldwide and is associated with poor prognosis. Patients diagnosed at an early stage may achieve a 5-year survival rate of approximately 50%, while those at an intermediate to advanced stage demonstrate a 20–50% survival at 3 years, and those with terminal stage HCC usually die within 6 months [1]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Spontaneous regression of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is an extraordinary phenomenon that occurs rarely. While more than 80 cases have been described, most have been established via radiological findings or examination of biopsy tissues rather than via pathological examination of a resected specimen. The present report describes a purported case of spontaneous regression of HCC as indicated by radiological examination. Subsequent immunostaining of surgically resected specimens revealed viable cancer cells, though only necrotic tissues were seen on hematoxylin and eosin staining. These data indicate that viable cancer cells may still be present even if imaging findings suggest spontaneous regression of HCC. Therefore, these patients should receive aggressive treatment similar to that used for patients with established HCC.
    Full-text · Article · Mar 2013 · Case Reports in Gastroenterology
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    • "Hepatitis C and B (Mujeeb et al., 1997; Khokhar et al., 2003; Bukhtiari et al., 2003) have been found to be the leading causes in Pakistan. Patients at an early stage may achieve a 5-year survival rate above 50%, those at intermediate-advanced stage have 20-50% survival at 3 years and those at terminal stage die within six months (Llovet et al., 2002). There is a dearth of data regarding HCC in Pakistan. "
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    ABSTRACT: To determine the tumour and general characteristics, especially survival, of patients presenting with hepatocellular carcinoma at our tertiary care cancer hospital. We retrospectively studied 584 charts of patients consecutively registered between 1995 and 2004 at the Shaukat Khanum Memorial Cancer Hospital and Research Centre, in Lahore, Pakistan. Descriptive statistics were obtained for gender, age, tumour size and morphology, alpha fetoprotein level, means of diagnosis, Child-Pugh status, risk factors, treatment given and follow-up. Survival analysis was conducted using the Kaplan-Meier method. Mean age at presentation was 56 years. Four hundred and forty four (76%) were male. Average tumour diameter evaluable in 412 patients was 8 cm. HCC was unifocal in 194 (33%), multifocal in 303 (52%) and unevaluable in 106. Mean AFP was 4,198 u/ml (range 1 - 278,560). Methods of diagnosis were FNA in 71, biopsy in 26, imaging/AFP > 200 in 70, lipiodol angiogram in 42, combinations of two of these in 365 and biphasic CT scans in 10. Initial Child-Pugh available for 400/584 was A in 216, B in 147 and C in 37. Evidence of prior hepatitis B infection was found in 114, and for hepatitis C in 254. Other than the four patients who had TACE followed by surgical resection, treatment was offered to 79/584 patients: among the 48 who had TACE, 26 experienced cancer progression whereas 11 had stable disease ranging from 6 - 20 months; another 11 were lost to follow-up. Of the 14 patients who underwent local resection, 2 were lost to follow-up, 7 developed recurrences but 5 remained disease free for a mean of 33 months. Following ethanol ablation in 17 patients, disease progressed in 5 but remained stable in 2 for a mean of 13 months; 10 were lost to follow-up. At the time of writing, 56 patients are alive (mean follow-up 20 months), 210 are known to have died (mean follow-up 9 months), and 318 were lost to follow-up within 3 months. Median overall survival was 10.5 months, death being the point of interest for survival analysis. Child-Pugh class stratified analysis (400/584) revealed median survival of 12 months for class A, 7.7 months for class B and 4 months for class C (p < 0.001). Most patients present with large, multifocal tumours, with poor liver function. Sixty one percent had evidence of prior infection with hepatitis B or C. The advanced stage at presentation, poor background liver function in many and the absence of a national liver transplantation program limit treatment options. Only 14% of patients were considered suitable for definitive treatment. Survival correlated with Child-Pugh status at presentation. Overall prognosis remains bleak. There is an urgent need to educate the public about the risks of hepatitis B and C and health professionals about early diagnosis and treatment, including possible development of a sustainable national liver transplant program.
    Preview · Article · Nov 2006 · Asian Pacific journal of cancer prevention: APJCP
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