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J Cancer Res Clin Oncol. 1998;124(7):397-400.

Portal vein thrombosis in hepatocellular carcinoma: age and sex distribution in an autopsy study.

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DPMSC, Cattedra di Medicina Interna, Università degli Studi, Udine, Italy.


The purpose of this work was to investigate the prevalence, associated features and effect on survival of portal vein thrombosis (PVT) complicating hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). The autopsy data of a series of 72 consecutive patients (57 male, 15 female) with HCC were reviewed. PVT was found in 32/72 patients (44%), and tended to be more common in female patients (10/15 versus 22/57, P = 0.052). Stratifying the data according to gender, it appeared that the mean age of patients with PVT compared to those without was greater in woman (71.9 +/- 5.9 versus 63.2 +/- 6.9 years, P = 0.024) and younger in men (58.8 +/- 8.9 versus 66.0 +/- 9.9 years, P = 0.007). When PVT was present, it was more likely that a definite diagnosis of HCC had been obtained before autopsy (P = 0.0001) and that death had been caused by bleeding complications (P = 0.007). Median survival times were similar, irrespective of the presence of PVT. During the natural history of HCC, PVT occurs in a substantial proportion of patients. Hormonal factors may have a permissive role in thrombus formation or neoplastic vascular invasion. Although in the presence of PVT a diagnosis of HCC is rarely missed and bleeding complications are likely to occur, patient survival does not seem to be significantly affected.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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