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Cancer J. 2009 May-Jun;15(3):236-42. doi: 10.1097/PPO.0b013e3181a58f30.

Patient selection for a curative approach to carcinomatosis.

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  • 1University Medical Center, Department of Surgery, Regensburg, Germany.


There is an increasing evidence showing that in selected patients with peritoneal carcinomatosis cytoreductive surgery and hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy may improve survival. Adequate patient selection is crucial to obtain a complete macroscopic cytoreduction, a leading predictor of patient outcome. However, selection is a very difficult process and is associated with a significant learning curve. Many selection criteria have to be assessed in each patient: performance status, comorbiditites, response to previous chemotherapies, histology grading, and presence of extra-abdominal or liver metastases, small bowel involvement, and tumor volume assessed by the peritoneal cancer index. All these factors have to be discussed interdisciplinary and with the patient to create an individualized treatment strategy. It is difficult to decide the relative importance of each selection criteria. However, completeness of cytoreduction, tumor volume, and histology grading are most important in many multivariate analysis independent prognostic factors. For appropriate selected patients with peritoneal carcinomatosis arising from appendiceal and colon cancer, cytoreductive surgery and hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy should be considered standard of care.

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