Intussusception due to hematogenous metastasis of hepatocellular carcinoma to the small intestine: A case report

World J Gastroenterol. 2020 Nov 14;26(42):6698-6705. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v26.i42.6698.


Background: The commonest sites of extrahepatic metastases from hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) are the lungs, bones, adrenal glands, and regional lymph nodes. Hematogenous metastasis to the gastrointestinal (GI) tract is a rare condition in patients with HCC, and the prognosis is usually poor. We report, herein, an extremely rare case of a patient with intussusception due to hematogenous metastasis of HCC to the ileum and his long-term survival with multidisciplinary therapy.

Case summary: The patient was a 71-year-old man with a history of chronic hepatitis B, who had undergone three surgeries for HCC. He was treated with sorafenib for peritoneal metastases of HCC. He was admitted to our hospital with chief complaints of abdominal pain and vomiting. Abdominal contrast-enhanced computed tomography imaging revealed a small intestinal tumor, presenting with intussusception and small bowel obstruction. Conservative treatment was started, but due to repeated exacerbation of symptoms, surgery was planned on the 28th d of hospitalization. Partial ileal resection without reducing the intussusception and end-to-end anastomosis was performed. On histological examination, tumor cells were not observed on the serosal surface, but intravascular invasion of tumor cells was seen. Immunohistochemistry was positive for immunohistochemical markers, and a diagnosis of hematogenous metastasis of HCC to the ileum was made. He remains alive 82 mo after the first surgery.

Conclusion: Prognosis of HCC patients with GI tract metastasis is usually poor, but in some cases, multidisciplinary therapy may prolong survival.

Keywords: Case report; Extrahepatic metastasis; Hematogenous metastases; Hepatocellular carcinoma; Intussusception; Small intestinal metastasis.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Carcinoma, Hepatocellular* / therapy
  • Humans
  • Intestinal Neoplasms*
  • Intestine, Small
  • Intussusception* / etiology
  • Liver Neoplasms* / complications
  • Male