Outcomes after hepatic and pulmonary metastasectomies compared with pulmonary metastasectomy alone in patients with colorectal cancer metastasis to liver and lungs

Norifumi Hattori, Yukihide Kanemitsu, Koji Komori, Yasuhiro Shimizu, Tsuyoshi Sano, Yoshiki Senda, Tetsuya Mitsudomi, Takayuki Fukui
World Journal of Surgery 2013, 37 (6): 1315-21

BACKGROUND: Surgical resection is the most effective treatment for colorectal cancer that has metastasized to the liver. Similarly, surgical resection improves survival for selected patients with pulmonary colorectal metastases. However, the indication for pulmonary metastasectomy is not clear in patients with both hepatic and pulmonary colorectal metastases. Therefore, we evaluated outcomes after pulmonary resection of colorectal metastases in patients with or without a history of curative hepatic metastasectomy.

METHODS: We retrospectively analyzed 96 patients who underwent pulmonary metastasectomy from March 1999 to November 2009. Patients were grouped according to treatment: resection of pulmonary metastases alone (lung metastasectomy group) or resection of both hepatic and pulmonary metastases (liver and lung metastasectomy group). Overall survival (OS) and disease-free survival (DFS) were evaluated by Kaplan-Meier analysis. Survival curves were compared using the log-rank test.

RESULTS: The 5-year OS for all patients was 61.3 %, and the 5-year DFS was 26.7 %. Group comparisons showed that the 5-year OS of the lung metastasectomy group was significantly better than that of the liver and lung metastasectomy group (69 vs. 43 %; p = 0.030). However, the 5-year DFS rates of the lung metastasectomy group (25.8 %) and liver and lung metastasectomy group (28.0 %) did not differ significantly. Recurrence was higher after resection of both hepatic and pulmonary metastases than after pulmonary metastases alone (79 vs. 45 %; p = 0.025).

CONCLUSIONS: Resection of pulmonary colorectal metastases may increase survival. However, the combination of liver and lung metastasectomies had a worse prognosis than pulmonary metastasectomy alone. In selected patients, combined liver and lung metastasectomy can be beneficial and result in acceptable DFS.


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