Repeat hepatectomy for colorectal liver metastases: A worthwhile operation?

Andrea Muratore, Roberto Polastri, Hedayat Bouzari, Vincenzo Vergara, Alessandro Ferrero, Lorenzo Capussotti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background and Objectives: After curative resection of hepatic colorectal metastases, 10-20% of patients experience a resectable hepatic recurrence. We wanted to assess the expected risk-to-benefit ratio in comparison to first hepatectomy and to determine the prognostic factors associated with survival. Methods: Twenty-nine patients from a group of 152 patients resected for colorectal liver metastases underwent 32 repeat hepatectomies. Results: In-hospital mortality was 3.5% (1/29 patients), the morbidity after repeat hepatectomy was lower than that after first hepatic resection. Combined extrahepatic surgery was performed on 34.5% of repeat hepatectomies vs. 6.9% of first hepatectomies (P = 0.01). Overall actuarial 3-year survival was 35.1%: four patients have survived more than 3 years and one survived for more than 5 years. The number of hepatic metastases and the carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA) serum levels were significant prognostic factors on univariate analysis. The synchronous resection of hepatic and extrahepatic disease was not associated with a lower survival rate when compared with that of patients without extrahepatic localization: three patients of the former group are alive and disease-free at more than 2 years. Conclusions: Repeat hepatic resection can provide long-term survival rates similar to those of first liver resection, with comparable mortality and morbidity. The presence of resectable extrahepatic disease must not be an absolute contraindication to synchronous hepatectomy because long-term survival is possible.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)127-132
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Surgical Oncology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2001


  • Hepatic metastases
  • Long-term survival
  • Repeat resection

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Oncology


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