Effect of Margin Status on Survival After Resection of Hilar Cholangiocarcinoma in the Modern Era of Adjuvant Therapies
Studies have shown that for patients with hilar cholangiocarcinoma (HC), survival is associated with negative resection margins (R0). This requires increasingly proximal resection, putting patients at higher risk for complications, which may delay chemotherapy. For patients with microscopically positive resection margins (R1), the use of modern adjuvant therapies may offset the effect of R1 resection.Methods
Patients at our institution with HC undergoing curative-intent resection between January 2008 and July 2019 were identified by retrospective record review. Demographic data, operative details, tumor characteristics, postoperative outcomes, recurrence, survival, and follow-up were recorded. Patients with R0 margin were compared to those with R1 margin. Patients with R2 resection were excluded.Results
Seventy-five patients underwent attempted resection with 34 (45.3%) cases aborted due to metastatic disease or locally advanced disease. Forty-one (54.7%) patients underwent curative-intent resection with R1 rate of 43.9%. Both groups had similar rates of adjuvant therapy (56.5% vs. 61.1%, P = .7672). Complication rates and 30 mortality were similar between groups (all P > .05). Both groups had similar median recurrence-free survival (R0 29.2 months vs. R1 27.8 months, P = .540) and median overall survival (R0 31.2 months vs. R1 38.8 months, P = .736) with similar median follow-up time (R0 29.9 months vs. R1 28.5 months, P = .8864).Conclusions
At our institution, patients undergoing hepatic resection for HC with R1 margins have similar recurrence-free and overall survival to those with R0 margins. Complications and short-term mortality were similar. This may indicate that with use of modern adjuvant therapies obtaining an R0 resection is not an absolute mandate.