Background/aims: Perioperative changes in intrinsic hepatocyte function and functional volume were investigated.
Methodology: 52 cases of liver cancer, including hepatocellular carcinoma, cholangiocellular carcinoma and metastatic carcinoma were studied. There were diagnoses of liver cirrhosis, liver fibrosis and normal liver in 20, 23 and 9 cases, respectively. Hepatic resection of subsegment, one segment, two segments and three segments were performed in 11, 6, 23 and 4 cases, respectively, while 8 cases were diagnosed as inoperable. Assessments were performed before and 4 weeks after hepatectomy with asialoglycoprotein (ASGP) receptor indices, i.e., technetium-99m-galactosyl human serum albumin (TcGSA) uptake by the liver, TcGSA retention in the blood and functional volume as measured by single emission computed tomography (SPECT) with TcGSA as a probe.
Results: The hyperbolic relationship between galactosyl human serum albumin (GSA) uptake by the liver and GSA retention in the blood, both of which were independent of functional volume, shifted to the right after hepatectomy. The number of conventional liver function tests correlating to the GSA uptake increased after hepatectomy. By contrast, none of the pre-operative and post-operative tests were correlated with functional volume. Post-operative decrease in intrinsic hepatocyte function can be minimized by selection of mode of hepatic resection.
Conclusions: These results indicate that GSA uptake by the liver can reveal information regarding intrinsic liver function which deteriorates and becomes a decisive factor after hepatectomy.