Objective: To assess the surgical results and clinicopathologic features of hepatic metastases from gastric adenocarcinoma to identify patients with a better probability of survival.
Summary background data: Many studies have reported the benefit of hepatic resection for metastatic tumors from colorectal cancer. However, indications for a surgical approach for gastric adenocarcinoma involving the liver have not been clearly defined.
Methods: Ninety (11%) of 807 patients with primary gastric cancer were diagnosed with synchronous (n = 78) or metachronous (n = 12) hepatic metastases. Of these, 19 underwent 20 resections intended to cure the metastatic lesion in the liver. The clinicopathologic features of the hepatic metastases in, and the surgical results for, the 19 patients were analyzed.
Results: The actuarial 1-year, 3-year, and 5-year survival rates after hepatic resection were, respectively, 77%, 34%, and 34%, and three patients survived for more than 5 years after surgery. Solitary and metachronous metastases were significant determinants for a favorable prognosis after hepatic resection. Pathologically, a fibrous pseudocapsule between the tumor and surrounding hepatic parenchyma was found in 13 of the 19 patients (68%). The presence of a peritumoral fibrous pseudocapsule and a well-differentiated histologic type of metastatic nodule were significant prognostic factors. Factors associated with the primary lesion were not significant prognostic determinants in patients who underwent curative resection of the primary cancer.
Conclusions: Solitary and metachronous metastases from gastric cancer should be treated by a surgical approach and confer a better prognosis. A new prognostic factor, the presence of a pseudocapsule, may be helpful in defining indications for postoperative adjuvant treatment.