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J Clin Oncol. 2002 Mar 15;20(6):1499-505.

Combined-modality treatment for resectable metastatic colorectal carcinoma to the liver: surgical resection of hepatic metastases in combination with continuous infusion of chemotherapy--an intergroup study.

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Cancer Center of Queens, Queens Hospital Center, Jamaica, Queens, NY 11432, USA.



Despite technical improvements that have minimized the morbidity and mortality of hepatic surgery, the long-term outcome of resection of hepatic metastases of colorectal cancer remains poor, with the majority of patients experiencing treatment failure in the liver. Because arterial chemotherapy regimens targeted to the liver have demonstrated high response rates, an intergroup trial of adjuvant therapy for patients undergoing hepatic resection of liver metastases from colorectal cancer was initiated.


Patients with one to three potentially resectable metastases were randomized preoperatively to receive no further therapy (control arm, 56 patients) or postoperative hepatic arterial floxuridine combined with intravenous continuous-infusion fluorouracil (chemotherapy arm, 53 patients). After exclusion of patients identified as ineligible for the planned treatment at the time of surgery, there were 45 control patients and 30 on the chemotherapy arm. The study was powered to evaluate improvement in time to recurrence and hepatic disease-free survival, not overall survival.


The 4-year recurrence-free rate was 25% for the control arm and 46% for the chemotherapy group (P =.04). The 4-year liver recurrence-free rate was 43% in the control group and 67% in the chemotherapy group (P =.03). The median survival of the 75 assessable patients was 49 months for the control arm and 63.7 months for the chemotherapy arm (P =.60). The median survival of all 109 patients was 47 months for the control arm compared with 34 months for the chemotherapy arm (P =.19)


These data demonstrate that adjuvant intra-arterial and intravenous chemotherapy was beneficial in prolonging time to recurrence and pre-venting hepatic recurrence after hepatic resection of colorectal cancer.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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