Hepatic vein tumor thrombosis in patients with hepatocellular carcinoma: Prevalence and clinical significance.

Published on Jun 1, 2021in United European gastroenterology journal3.549
· DOI :10.1002/UEG2.12098
Aline Mähringer-Kunz5
Estimated H-index: 5
(University of Mainz),
Franziska I Meyer (University of Cologne)+ 7 AuthorsSebastian Schotten6
Estimated H-index: 6
(University of Mainz)
BACKGROUND There is strong evidence that portal vein tumor thrombosis (PVTT) is associated with poor survival in patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). However, data regarding the clinical significance of hepatic vein tumor thrombosis (HVTT) is rare, particularly in Western patients. OBJECTIVE To determine the HVTT prevalence in a Western patient population and its impact on survival. METHODS We included 1310 patients with HCC treated in our tertiary referral center between January 2005 and December 2016. HVTT and PVTT were diagnosed with contrast-enhanced cross-sectional imaging. Overall survival (OS) was calculated starting from the initial HCC diagnosis, and in a second step, starting from the first appearance of vascular invasion. RESULTS We observed macrovascular invasion (MVI) in 519 patients who suffered from either isolated HVTT (n = 40), isolated PVTT (n = 352), or both combined (HVTT + PVTT) (n = 127). Calculated from the initial HCC diagnosis, the median OS for patients with isolated HVTT was significantly shorter than that of patients without MVI (13.3 vs. 32.5 months, p < 0.001). Calculated from the first appearance of MVI, the median OS was similar among patients with isolated HVTT (6.5 months), isolated PVTT (5 months), and HVTT + PVTT (5 months). Multivariate analysis confirmed HVTT as an independent risk factor for poor survival. CONCLUSIONS HVTT may be more common than typically reported. In most patients, it was accompanied by PVTT. Isolated HVTT occurred less frequently and later than isolated PVTT; however, once developed, it had the same deleterious impact on survival. Therefore, patients with HVTT should be classified as advanced stage of HCC.
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