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J Clin Oncol. 2008 Aug 1;26(22):3672-80. doi: 10.1200/JCO.2007.15.7297.

Is hepatic resection justified after chemotherapy in patients with colorectal liver metastases and lymph node involvement?

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Assistance Publique-Hôpitaux de Paris Hôpital Paul Brousse, Centre Hépato-Biliaire, 12 Avenue Paul Vaillant Couturier, F-94804 Villejuif, France.



For patients with colorectal liver metastases (CLM), regional lymph node (RLN) involvement is one of the worst prognostic factors. The objective of this study was to evaluate the ability of a multidisciplinary approach, including preoperative chemotherapy and hepatectomy, to improve patient outcomes.


Outcomes for a consecutively treated group of patients with CLM and simultaneous RLN involvement were compared with a cohort of patients without RLN involvement. Univariate and multivariate analysis of clinical variables was used to identify prognostic factors in this high-risk group. Results Of the 763 patients who underwent resection at our institution for CLM between 1992 and 2006, 47 patients (6%) were treated with hepatectomy and simultaneous lymphadenectomy. All patients had received preoperative chemotherapy. Five-year overall survival (OS) for patients with and without RLN involvement were 18% and 53%, respectively (P < .001). Five-year disease-free survival rates were 11% and 23%, respectively (P = .004). When diagnosed preoperatively, RLN involvement had an increased 5-year OS compared with intraoperative detection, although the difference was not significant (35% v 10%; P = .18). Location of metastatic RLN strongly influenced survival, with observed 5-year OS of 25% for pedicular, 0% for celiac, and 0% for para-aortic RLN (P = .001). At multivariate analysis, celiac RLN involvement and age >or= 40 years were identified as independent poor prognostic factors.


Combined liver resection and pedicular lymphadenectomy is justified when RLN metastases respond to or are stabilized by preoperative chemotherapy, particularly in young patients. In contrast, this approach does not benefit patients with celiac and/or para-aortic RLN involvement, even when patients' disease is responding to preoperative chemotherapy.

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