Background: Five-year survival rates after resection of liver metastases from colorectal carcinoma are close to 25%. Recurrences occur in two-thirds of the patients after surgery. Selection of patients likely to benefit from surgery remains controversial and subjective.
Methods: Data from 1568 patients with resected liver metastases from colorectal carcinoma were collected. The prognostic value of different factors was studied through uni- and multivariate analyses. A scoring system was developed including the most relevant factors.
Results: Two- and 5-year survival rates were 64% and 28%, respectively, and were affected by: age; size of largest metastasis or CEA level; stage of the primary tumor; disease free interval; number of liver nodules; and resection margin. Giving one point to each factor, the population was divided into three risk groups three risk groups with different 2-year survival rates: 0-2 (79%), 3-4 (60%), 5-7 (43%).
Conclusions: A simple prognostic scoring system was proposed to evaluate the chances for cure of patients after resection of liver metastases from colorectal carcinoma. The comparison between expected survival and estimated operative risk can help determine on an objective basis whether surgery is worthwhile. This system needs further prospective validation.