Comparison of the outcomes between an anatomical subsegmentectomy and a non-anatomical minor hepatectomy for single hepatocellular carcinomas based on a Japanese nationwide survey

Surgery. 2008 Apr;143(4):469-75. doi: 10.1016/j.surg.2007.12.003.


Background: Although a surgical resection is an important modality for the treatment of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), the impact of the operative method on both the patient survival and disease-free survival (DFS) still remains controversial.

Methods: Using a nationwide Japanese database, 72,744 patients with HCC who underwent a curative liver resection between 1994 and 2001 were divided into two groups based on whether an anatomical subsegmentectomy (AS) or a non-anatomical minor hepatectomy (MH) was performed. A total of 5,781 patients with single HCCs were selected for the study and divided into 3 subgroups based on the size of the HCCs (less than 2 cm, 2 to 5 cm, and greater than 5 cm in diameter). An AS was performed for 2,267 patients while an MH was performed for 3,514 patients.

Results: The overall DFS was significantly better after an AS (P = .0089). When the patients were stratified according to the size of the HCC, a better DFS was seen in the patients with HCC from 2 to 5 cm after an AS (P < .0005). Further stratification according to liver damage did not show any significant differences between an AS and an MH.

Conclusion: An AS is therefore recommended, especially when the size of HCC ranges from 2 to 5 cm.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Carcinoma, Hepatocellular / surgery*
  • Disease-Free Survival
  • Female
  • Health Care Surveys
  • Hepatectomy / methods*
  • Hepatectomy / statistics & numerical data
  • Humans
  • Japan / epidemiology
  • Liver Neoplasms / surgery*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Survival Analysis
  • Treatment Outcome