Impact of surgical margins on survival of 37 dogs with massive hepatocellular carcinoma

Impact of surgical margins on survival of 37 dogs with massive hepatocellular carcinoma
Peer reviewed

Abstract

AIMS: To compare the survival of dogs with completely resected massive hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) with that of dogs in which HCC were incompletely excised.

METHODS: A retrospective cohort study was conducted. Dogs that underwent surgical excision of massive HCC between November 2006 and April 2015 were included. Dogs that died in the perioperative period or were lost to follow-up within 2 months after surgery were excluded. Data were collected from the medical records and a single pathologist examined all available histology slides to confirm the diagnosis of HCC. Surgical margins were defined as complete if no neoplastic cells were seen at the edge of excised tissues, based on original histopathology reports. Progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS) were compared between dogs with complete surgical margins (CM) and those with incomplete margins (IM) using a log-rank test.

RESULTS: Of the 37 dogs included in the study, 25 were allocated to the CM group and 12 to the IM group. Progressive local disease developed after surgery in three dogs in the CM group and seven dogs in the IM group. Three dogs in the CM group and five dogs in the IM group died due to tumour progression. Median PFS was longer for dogs in the CM group (1,000 (95% CI=562–1,438) days) compared to dogs in the IM group (521 (95% CI=243–799) days; p=0.007). OS was also longer for dogs in the CM group (>1,836 days) compared to those in the IM group (median 765 (95% CI=474–1,056) days; p=0.02).

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE: Compared with complete resection, incomplete resection decreased PFS and OS in dogs with massive HCC. Dogs with incompletely excised HCC should be closely monitored for local recurrence, although median OS was >2 years following incomplete excision. Further prospective studies are warranted to confirm these findings.


KEY WORDS: Canine, hepatocellular carcinoma, surgical margins, surgical oncology, prognosis

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