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Survival of Patients with Hepatocellular Carcinoma (HCC) Treated by Percutaneous Radio-Frequency Ablation (RFA) Is Affected by Complete Radiological Response

  • Authors: Cabibbo, G; Maida, M; Genco, C; Alessi, N; Peralta, M; Butera, G; Galia, M; Brancatelli, G; Genova, C; Raineri, M; Orlando, E; Attardo, S; Giarratano, A; Midiri, M; Di Marco, V; Craxì, A; Cammà, C
  • Publication year: 2013
  • Type: Abstract in rivista (Abstract in rivista)
  • OA Link:


Background: Radio-frequency ablation (RFA) has been employed in the treatment of Barcelona Clinic Liver Cancer (BCLC) early stage hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) as curative treatments. Aim: To assess the effectiveness and the safety of RFA in patients with early HCC and compensated cirrhosis. Methods: A cohort of 151 consecutive patients with early stage HCC (122 Child-Pugh class A and 29 class B patients) treated with RFA were enrolled. Clinical, laboratory and radiological follow-up data were collected from the time of first RFA. A single lesion was observed in 113/151 (74.8%), two lesions in 32/151 (21.2%), and three lesions in 6/151 (4%) of patients. Results: The overall survival rates were 94%, 80%, 64%, 49%, and 41% at 12, 24, 36, 48 and 60 months, respectively. Complete response (CR) at 1 month (p,0.0001) and serum albumin levels (p = 0.0004) were the only variables indipendently linked to survival by multivariate Cox model. By multivariate analysis, tumor size (p = 0.01) is the only variable associated with an increased likehood of CR. The proportion of major complications after treatment was 4%. Conclusions: RFA is safe and effective for managing HCC with cirrhosis, especially for patients with HCC #3 cm and higher baseline albumin levels. Complete response after RFA significantly increases survival.