COMPARATIVE STUDY
JOURNAL ARTICLE

Interventional radiology for advanced hepatocellular carcinoma: comparison of hepatic artery infusion chemotherapy and transcatheter arterial lipiodol chemoembolization

Shuji Sumie, Fumihiko Yamashita, Eiji Ando, Masatoshi Tanaka, Yoichi Yano, Kazuta Fukumori, Michio Sata
AJR. American Journal of Roentgenology 2003, 181 (5): 1327-34
14573429

OBJECTIVE: The prognosis of advanced hepatocellular carcinoma remains poor. The aim of this study was to compare the efficacy of hepatic artery infusion chemotherapy and transcatheter arterial Lipiodol chemoembolization for treatment of advanced tumor. SUBJECTS AND METHODS. Thirty-seven patients with hepatocellular carcinoma and unresectable tumors were enrolled. In the hepatic artery infusion chemotherapy group (n = 16), cisplatin (10 mg/person, on days 1-5) and subsequent 5-fluorouracil (250 mg/person, on days 1-5) were administered for four serial courses. In the transcatheter arterial Lipiodol chemoembolization group (n = 21), an emulsion of Epirubicin (20-30 mg/person) and Lipiodol was administered every 3-4 weeks.

RESULTS: The tumor response rates (complete response plus partial response for all cases) of the hepatic artery infusion chemotherapy and transcatheter arterial Lipiodol chemoembolization groups were 56.3% and 23.8%, respectively, showing the significantly higher rate in the former than in the latter group. The cumulative survival rates between the two groups were not significantly different; whereas in those patients whose tumors were classified as TNM stage IV or as having the maximal tumor size of greater than 5 cm, patients tended to have higher survival rates in the hepatic artery infusion chemotherapy group than in the transcatheter arterial Lipiodol chemoembolization group. Univariate analysis identified the serum aspartate aminotransferase value as solely significant. Patients' adverse reactions were successfully managed by treatment of symptoms. Adverse events, such as obstructions of the catheter or hepatic artery or infection around the catheter, rarely occurred.

CONCLUSION: Hepatic artery infusion chemotherapy had a better antitumor effect than transcatheter arterial Lipiodol chemoembolization and may be a useful therapeutic option for more advanced hepatocellular carcinoma.

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