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Ann Surg Oncol. 2005 Aug;12(8):629-36. Epub 2005 Jun 22.

Feasibility and efficacy of combination therapy with preoperative and postoperative chemoradiation, extended pancreatectomy, and postoperative liver perfusion chemotherapy for locally advanced cancers of the pancreatic head.

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  • 1Department of Surgery, Osaka Medical Center for Cancer and Cardiovascular Diseases, 1-3-3 Nakamichi, Higashinari-ku, Osaka 537-8511, Japan.



The outcome after resection of advanced pancreatic cancers is extremely poor because of the high incidence of the postoperative development of liver metastasis and local recurrence. We performed a combination of chemoradiation and liver perfusion chemotherapy and extended pancreatectomy.


Nineteen patients with T3 pancreatic head cancers were enrolled. A total of 24 Gy in 12 fractions of 10-MV x-rays with a concurrent intravenous infusion of 5-fluorouracil (5-FU; 3 g/12 days) was administered to the pancreatic head area. An extended pancreaticoduodenectomy was performed, and catheters were placed into the gastroduodenal artery and the superior mesenteric vein. During the first 28 postoperative days, 5-FU was continuously infused via the hepatic artery and portal vein (3.5 g/28 days x 2). Finally, 36 Gy in 18 fractions with 5-FU (3 g/6 days) was applied to the pancreatic bed.


After preoperative chemoradiation, four patients did not undergo surgical resection because of distant metastases. Fifteen patients underwent pancreaticoduodenectomy, liver perfusion chemotherapy, and postoperative chemoradiation. No patient developed grade 3 toxicity as a result of preoperative chemoradiation, but one patient (7%) developed grade 3 leukopenia during the postoperative treatments. The morbidity rate was 20% (3 of 15 patients), and the mortality rate was 0%. The overall 3-year survival rate was 53%. The 3-year disease-free survival rate was 66% in patients who pathologically responded well (>50%), versus 0% in patients with poor responses (P = .04).


A combination of preoperative and postoperative chemoradiation plus postoperative liver perfusion chemotherapy with an extended pancreatectomy is feasible, and the long-term outcomes are also promising.

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