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Front Oncol. 2020 Feb 4;10:40. doi: 10.3389/fonc.2020.00040. eCollection 2020.

Vascular Resection for Pancreatic Cancer: 2019 French Recommendations Based on a Literature Review From 2008 to 6-2019.

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Institut Paoli-Calmettes (IPC), Marseille, France.
Faculté de Médecine, Aix Marseille Université, Marseille, France.
Hôpital Beaujon, Clichy, France.
Université Paris VII - Denis Diderot, Paris, France.


Introduction: Vascular resection remains a subject of debate in the management of Pancreatic Ductal Adenocarcinoma (PDAC). These French recommendations were drafted on behalf of the French National Institute of Cancer (INCA-2019). Material and Methods: A systematic literature search, with PubMed, Medline® (OvidSP), EMBASE, the Cochrane Library, was performed for abstracts published in English from January 2008 to June 2019, and identified systematic reviews/metaanalyses, retrospective analyses and case series dedicated to vascular resections in the setting of PDAC. All selected articles were graded for level of evidence and strength of recommendation was given according to the GRADE system. Results: Neoadjuvant treatment should be performed rather than direct surgery in borderline and locally advanced non-metastatic PDAC with venous and/or arterial infiltration (T4 stage). Patients who respond or those with stable disease and good performance status should undergo surgical exploration to assess resectability because cross-sectional imaging often fails to identify the extent of the remaining viable tumor. Combining vascular resection with pancreatectomy in these cases increases the feasibility of curative resection which is still the only option to improve long-term survival. Venous resection (VR) is recommended if resection is possible in the presence of limited lateral or circumferential involvement but without venous occlusion and in the absence of arterial contact with the celiac axis (CA; cephalic tumors) or the superior mesenteric artery (SMA; all tumor locations) (Grade B). The patients should be in good general condition because mortality and morbidity are higher than following pancreatectomy without VR (Grade B). In case of planned VR, neoadjuvant treatment is recommended since it improves both rate of R0 resections and survival compared to upfront surgery (Grade B). Due to their complexity and specificities, arterial resection (AR; mainly the hepatic artery (HA) or the CA) must be discussed in selected patients, in multidisciplinary team meetings in tertiary referral centers, according to the tumor location and the type of arterial extension. In case of invasion of a short segment of the common HA, resection with arterial reconstruction may be proposed after neoadjuvant therapy. In case of SMA invasion, neoadjuvant therapy may be followed by laparotomy with dissection and biopsy of peri-arterial tissues. A pancreaticoduodenectomy (PD) with SMA-resection is not recommended if the frozen section examination is positive (Grade C). In case of distal PDAC with invasion of the CA, a distal pancreatectomy with CA-resection without arterial reconstruction may be proposed after neoadjuvant therapy and radiologic embolization of the CA branches (expert opinion). Conclusion: For PDAC with vascular involvement, neoadjuvant treatment followed by pancreatectomy with venous resection or even arterial resection can be proposed as a curative option in selected patients with selected vascular involvement.


French recommendations; arterial resection; pancreatic adenocarcinoma; recommendations (guidelines); venous resection

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