Two hundred and forty cases of hepatocellular carcinomas (HCC), diagnosed by ultrasonography and fine needle biopsy, were studied. The following parameters were investigated: 1. echo features (240 cases) - hypoechoic, 54; hyperechoic, 56; complex, 112; isoechoic with halo, 18; 2. tumor size (240 cases) - single tumor under 4.5 cm, 30; single tumor over 4.5 cm, 74; multiple masses or diffuse, 136; 3. cytologic pattern (240 cases) - well and medium differentiated, 144; pleomorphic, 43; poorly differentiated, 28; unclassified, 25; 4. histologic pattern (157 cases) - trabecular, 74; solid, 42; acinar, 1; mixed, 2; unclassified, 38; 5. alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) level (185 cases) - under 20 ng/ml, 79; between 20 and 320 ng/ml, 40; over 320 ng/ml, 66; 6. HBs Ag (208 cases) - present in 56 cases; 7. cirrhosis (102 cases) - present in 79 cases. Some of the above parameters were correlated with one another. There was: 1. a highly significant frequency of the hypoechoic feature among small HCC; 2. a percentage of AFP-producing tumors increasing with tumor size; 3. no relationship between AFP production and cytologic or histologic pattern; 4. no relationship between tumor size and cytologic or histologic pattern. However, among the small HCC, all the 9 HCC with a diameter of less than 3 cm showed a trabecular pattern and well-differentiated cells. Cirrhosis was present in every patient with a small HCC. Since the discovery of a small HCC is an incidental ultrasonographic finding in the context of severe liver disease, ultrasonographic monitoring of cirrhotic patients is the best available strategy to screen for small HCC.
|Number of pages||6|
|Publication status||Published - Oct 31 1987|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research