Purpose. To describe diagnostic imaging features (with a focus on CT findings) of extrahepatic relapses of treated hepatocellular carcinoma and to propose a post-treatment follow-up protocol. Material and methods. During a six-year span, 226 patients (aged 32-88 years) with chronic hepatitis/cirrhosis were diagnosed as having hepatocellular carcinoma confined to the liver and treated percutaneously with radiofrequency (RF) ablation. A total of 313 treatment sessions were performed. Post-therapeutic follow-up is based upon clinical evaluation, laboratory and imaging (with CT holding the key role) studies. Results. Mean duration of follow-up was 17 months. After successful treatment, actuarial probability of neoplastic relapse is 30.7% after 1 year and 58.5% after 2 years. Eighty-eight patients had recurrence of hepatocellular carcinoma after a variable time interval (mean 7.3 months). Extrahepatic neoplastic relapse was observed in 14 patients, half of these without active hepatic disease. Distribution of extrahepatic sites of recurrence was as follows: abdominal lymph nodes (6 cases), bone (3), peritoneum (2), adrenal (2), lung (1). Five patients (2.2%) had a second primary neoplasm. Conclusions. Extrahepatic hepatocellular carcinoma is uncommon and occurs in advanced stages, but may represent a pattern of post-treatment relapse. The distinctive hypervascularity of this tumour histology may be observed in adenopathies and adrenal metastases. Second primary neoplasms should be considered in the differential diagnosis of lesions observed during follow-up.
|Translated title of the contribution||Extrahepatic recurrence and second malignancies after treatment of hepatocellular carcinoma: Spectrum of imaging findings|
|Number of pages||10|
|Publication status||Published - Mar 2002|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging