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Medline ® Abstract for Reference 71

of 'Treatment for potentially resectable exocrine pancreatic cancer'

Patterns of recurrence after curative resection of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma.
Van den Broeck A, Sergeant G, Ectors N, Van Steenbergen W, Aerts R, Topal B
Eur J Surg Oncol. 2009 Jun;35(6):600-4. Epub 2009 Jan 7.
AIMS: Despite curative surgery for pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC), most patients develop cancer recurrence and die from metastatic disease. Understanding of the patterns of failure after surgery can lead to new insights for novel therapeutic modalities. The aim of the present study is to describe the patterns of recurrence after curative resection of PDAC.
METHODS: A retrospective analysis was performed of 145 consecutive resections for PDAC between 1998 and 2005 (M/F 75/70; median (range) age 67 years (32-85 y)). The location of the first and consecutive recurrences, and the time interval to cancer recurrence after surgical resection was studied. The magnitude of tumour-free margin was less than a millimetre in 48 patients, whereas a positive surgical margin was observed in 27 patients. The median duration of follow-up was 18.5 (range 0.3-116.8) months.
RESULTS: Cancer recurrence was observed in 110 patients. The first location of recurrence was locoregional in 19, extra-pancreatic in 66, and combined locoregional and extra-pancreatic in 25 patients. Extra-pancreatic recurrence developed in the liver in 57, peritoneal in 35, pulmonary in 15, and retroperitoneal in 5 patients. The median (95% CI) overall (OS) and disease-free (DFS) survival was 18.7 (15.7-23.5) and 9.8 (7.5-12.4) months, respectively. The type of cancer recurrence did not significantly influence OS, while the resection margin status had a prognostic effect.
CONCLUSION: The vast majority of patients who undergo potentially curative surgery for PDAC develop cancer recurrence located in the abdominal cavity. Surgical resection margins with tumour involvement and tumour-free margins of less then 1mm are negative prognostic factors. Further research on better local surgical control, peri-operative locoregional treatment, and more effective adjuvant systemic therapy is necessary to improve long-term survival of patients with curable PDAC.
Department of Abdominal Surgery, University Hospital Leuven, Leuven, Belgium.