J Cancer 2018; 9(21):4000-4008. doi:10.7150/jca.24250 This issue
1. State Key Laboratory of Oncology in South China, Sun Yat-Sen University Cancer Center, Guangzhou, China
2. Department of Hepatobiliary Oncology, Sun Yat-Sen University Cancer Center, Guangzhou, China
3. Department of Ultrasound, Sun Yat-Sen University Cancer Center, Guangzhou, China
* These authors contributed equally to this work.
Background: To compare the efficacy and safety of long- versus short-interval of transarterial chemoembolization (TACE) in unresectable hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) patients.
Methods: This retrospective analysis enrolled 574 patients with unresectable HCC who underwent at least two sessions of TACE between January 2007 and December 2014. The patients were divided into a short-interval group (SIG) and a long-interval group (LIG) based on the median TACE interval of the first two sessions. Propensity score matching (PSM) identified 476 patients for a comparison of overall survival (OS) and safety.
Results: Before matching, the LIG had a longer OS than the SIG (Median: 12.1 vs. 8.7 months; P = 0.003). After matching, median OS in the SIG and LIG were 9.1 and 14.2 months (P < 0.001). The 1-, 2-, and 3-year survival rates were 37.5%, 17.1%, and 9.9% for SIG and 50.1%, 19.3%, and 11.6% for LIG, respectively. The TACE interval was an independent prognostic factor for OS. The LIG had a longer OS than the SIG in Barcelona Clinic liver cancer (BCLC) stage C patients (Median: 10.2 vs. 5.8 months; P < 0.001), but not in BCLC-A or B. The postoperative adverse rates were similar in matched SIG and LIG patients (29.4% vs. 33.6%, P = 0.324).
Conclusions: A long interval between the first two sessions of TACE resulted in a better OS than a short interval in patients with unresectable BCLC C-stage HCC.
Keywords: unresectable hepatocellular carcinoma, transarterial chemoembolization, interval