Sustained Elevation of Postoperative Serum Level of Carbohydrate Antigen 19-9 is High-Risk Stigmata for Primary Hepatic Recurrence in Patients with Curatively Resected Pancreatic Adenocarcinoma
Survival after surgery for pancreatic adenocarcinoma (PA) is poor and heterogeneous, even for curative (R0) resection. Serum carbohydrate antigen (CA) 19-9 levels are important prognostic markers for resected PA. However, sustained elevation of CA19-9 in association with the patterns of recurrence has been rarely investigated.
Patients who underwent R0 resection (n = 539) were grouped according to postoperative serum CA19-9 levels (Group E: sustained elevation; Group N: no elevation). Clinicopathological factors, patterns of recurrence, and survival were compared between the groups.
Group E (n = 159) had significantly shorter median overall survival (17.1 vs. 35.4 months, p < 0.0001) than Group N (n = 380). Postoperative CA19-9 elevation was a significant independent predictor of poor survival in multivariate analysis (hazard ratio 1.98, p < 0.0001). The rate of hepatic recurrence in Group E was 2.6-fold higher than in Group N (45% vs. 17%, p < 0.0001). Postoperative CA19-9 elevation was a strongest independent predictor of primary hepatic recurrence (p < 0.0001) by a multiple regression model. Loco-regional, peritoneal, and other distant recurrence did not differ between the groups. The extent of preoperative CA19-9 elevation was correlated sustained elevation of CA19-9 after surgery (p < 0.0001) and primary hepatic recurrence (p = 0.0019).
Sustained CA19-9 elevation was strong predictor of primary hepatic recurrence and short survival in cases of R0 resection for PA.
This study represents the work for seven academic medical institutions. This work required establishing uniform database at each institution and therefore required the work of multiple authors.
This work was supported in part by Grants-in-Aid for Scientific Research 24592018 and 16K10588 from the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science.
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflicts of interest
The authors have no potential conflicts of interest to disclose.
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