Background/purpose: Liver stiffness (LS) measurement using transient elastography can accurately assess the degree of liver fibrosis, which is associated with the risk of the development of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). We investigated whether LS values could predict HCC de novo recurrence after radiofrequency ablation (RFA).
Methods: This retrospective, multicenter study analyzed 111 patients with HCC who underwent RFA and LS measurement using transient elastography between May 2005 and April 2011. All patients were followed until March 2013 to monitor for HCC recurrence.
Results: This study included 76 men and 35 women with a mean age of 62.4 years, and the mean LS value was 21.2 kPa. During the follow-up period (median 22.4 months), 47 (42.3%) patients experienced HCC de novo recurrence, and 18 (16.2%) died. Patients with recurrence had significantly more frequent liver cirrhosis, more frequent history of previous treatment for HCC, higher total bilirubin, larger spleen size, larger total tumor size, higher tumor number, higher LS values, and lower platelet counts than those without recurrence (all P<0.05). On multivariate analysis, together with previous anti-HCC treatment history, patients with LS values >13.0 kPa were at significantly greater risk for recurrence after RFA, with a hazard ratio (HR) of 3.115 (95% confidence interval [CI], 1.238–7.842, P<0.05). Moreover, LS values independently predicted the mortality after RFA, with a HR of 9.834 (95% CI, 1.148–84.211, P<0.05), together with total bilirubin.
Conclusions: Our data suggest that LS measurement is a useful predictor of HCC de novo recurrence and overall survival after RFA.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Pharmacology (medical)