Research Papers:

Combined CT-guided radiofrequency ablation with systemic chemotherapy improves the survival for nasopharyngeal carcinoma with oligometastasis in liver: Propensity score matching analysis

Wang Li, Yutong Bai, Ming Wu, Lujun Shen, Feng Shi, Xuqi Sun, Caijin Lin, Boyang Chang, Changchuan Pan, Zhiwen Li and Peihong Wu _

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Oncotarget. 2017; 8:52132-52141. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.10383

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Wang Li1,*, Yutong Bai2,*, Ming Wu2, Lujun Shen1, Feng Shi1, Xuqi Sun2, Caijin Lin2, Boyang Chang1, Changchuan Pan3, Zhiwen Li2 and Peihong Wu1

1Department of Medical Imaging and Interventional Radiology, Sun Yat-sen University Cancer Center, State Key Laboratory of Oncology in South China, Collaborative Innovation Center for Cancer Medicine, Guangzhou, Guangdong 51060, P. R. China

2Zhong Shan Medical School, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510080, People’s Republic of China

3Department of Medical Oncology, Sichuan Cancer Hospital and Institute, Second People’s Hospital of Sichuan Province, Chengdu, Sichuan 610041, P. R. China

*Wang Li and Yutong Bai were co-first authors and contributed equally to this work

Correspondence to:

Peihong Wu, email: wuph@sysucc.org.cn

Keywords: Nasopharyngeal carcinoma, liver metastasis, radiofrequency ablation, palliative chemotherapy, prognosis

Received: February 25, 2016    Accepted: June 09, 2016    Published: July 02, 2016


The aim of this study was to retrospectively compare the treatment efficacy of systemic chemotherapy combined with sequential CT-guided radiofrequency ablation (Chemo-RFA) to chemotherapy alone (Chemo-only) in the management of nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) with liver metastasis. Between 2003 and 2011, 328 NPC patients diagnosed with liver metastasis at Sun Yat-sen University Cancer Center were enrolled. One-to-one matched pairs between Chemo-RFA group with the Chemo-only group were generated using propensity score matching. The associations of treatment modality with overall survival (OS) and progression-free survival (PFS) were determined by Cox regression. Of the patients enrolled, 37 patients (11.8 %) received combined treatment, 291 (82.2) received chemotherapy alone. The patients in Chemo-RFA group were more frequently classified as lower number (≤3) of liver metastatic lesions (P<0.001), had lower rates of bi-lobar liver metastasis (P<0.001) and extra-hepatic metastasis (P<0.001) than patients in Chemo-only group. After propensity score matching, 37 pairs of well-matched liver metastatic NPC patients were selected from different treatment groups. The adjusted hazard ratio in OS and PFS of the choice for Chemo-RFA approach to Chemo-only was 0.53 (95%CI, 0.30-0.93) and 0.60 (95%CI, 0.36-0.97), respectively. In conclusion, combined CT-guided RFA and chemotherapy approach offer the chance of improved survival for NPC patients with oligometastasis in liver, and should be considered if the ablation is technically feasible.

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