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Am J Surg. 2001 Feb;181(2):153-9.

Anatomical major resection versus nonanatomical limited resection for liver metastases from colorectal carcinoma.

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  • 1Department of Surgery, Cancer Institute Hospital, Tokyo, Japan. nkokudo@jfcr.or.jp



Although systematic anatomical hepatic resection has been reported to improve patient survival in hepatocellular carcinoma, principles of hepatectomy procedure have not been clearly demonstrated in secondary hepatic malignancy. The purpose of the present study was to determine whether selection of surgical procedures for liver resection is associated with the pattern of tumor recurrence or patient survival.


During the period of 1980 through 1999, 174 cases underwent liver resection for hepatic metastasis from colorectal cancer. Of these, 96 underwent systematic anatomical major hepatic resection (anatomical group) and 78 cases underwent nonanatomical limited resection (nonanatomical group). Subset analysis of 115 patients with unilobar single or double tumors was also conducted.


The overall 5-year survival rate of 174 patients was 43.2%. Univariate analysis did not show a significant difference in patient survival according to surgical procedure (anatomical group versus nonanatomical group). Operative morbidity and mortality rates were slightly higher in anatomical group. From the subset analysis in unilobar single or double tumors, anatomical major hepatectomy was unnecessary in 80.4% of the cases if the tumors were resectable by nonanatomical limited resection. Ninety percent of the ipsilateral recurrence, which could have been avoided if the first operation was anatomical hemihepatectomy, could undergo second hepatectomy with 5-year survival rate of 58.3%.


There was not a significant difference in patient survival according to surgical procedure. To minimize surgical stress and operative risk, nonanatomical limited liver resection should be a basic surgical procedure for colorectal metastases.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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