Baseline liver steatosis has no impact on liver metastases and overall survival in rectal cancer patients

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: The liver is one of the most frequent sites of metastases in rectal cancer. This study aimed to evaluate how the development of synchronous or metachronous liver metastasis and overall survival are impacted by baseline liver steatosis and chemotherapy-induced liver damage in rectal cancer patients. Methods: Patients diagnosed with stage II to IV rectal cancer between 2010 and 2016 in our province with suitable baseline CT scan were included. Data on cancer diagnosis, staging, therapy, outcomes and liver function were collected. CT scans were retrospectively reviewed to assess baseline steatosis (liver density < 48 HU and/or liver-to-spleen ratio < 1.1). Among patients without baseline steatosis and treated with neoadjuvant chemotherapy, chemotherapy-induced liver damage was defined as steatosis appearance, ≥ 10% liver volume increase, or significant increase in liver function tests. Results: We included 283 stage II to IV rectal cancer patients with suitable CT scan (41% females; mean age 68 ± 14 years). Steatosis was present at baseline in 90 (31.8%) patients, synchronous liver metastasis in 42 (15%) patients and metachronous liver metastasis in 26 (11%); 152 (54%) deaths were registered. The prevalence of synchronous liver metastasis was higher in patients with steatosis (19% vs 13%), while the incidence of metachronous liver metastasis was similar. After correcting for age, sex, stage, and year of diagnosis, steatosis was not associated with metachronous liver metastasis nor with overall survival. In a small analysis of 63 patients without baseline steatosis and treated with neoadjuvant chemotherapy, chemotherapy-induced liver damage was associated with higher incidence of metachronous liver metastasis and worse survival, results which need to be confirmed by larger studies. Conclusions: Our data suggest that rectal cancer patients with steatosis had a similar occurrence of metastases during follow-up, even if the burden of liver metastases at diagnosis was slightly higher, compatible with chance.

Original languageEnglish
Article number253
JournalBMC Cancer
Volume21
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2021

Keywords

  • Chemotherapy induced liver injury
  • Liver metastases
  • Liver Steatosis
  • Rectal Cancer

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Genetics
  • Cancer Research

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Baseline liver steatosis has no impact on liver metastases and overall survival in rectal cancer patients'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this