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High malignancy of hepatocellular carcinoma in alcoholic patients with HCV

We investigated the relationships between alcohol consumption, the degree of malignancy evaluated histologically, and tumor-free survival rates.

In 80 male patients with the hepatitis C virus and small hepatocellular carcinomas (diameter of main tumor, 3.0 cm or less), 38 patients had drunk 86 gm or more of ethanol per day for at least 10 years until the detection of hepatocellular carcinoma (group 1), whereas the remaining 42 patients were nondrinkers or occasional drinkers (group 2).

Differences in the results of liver function tests between the groups were not statistically significant. The operative methods used in the groups were comparable. The proportion of well-differentiated hepatocellular carcinoma was lower in group 1 than in group 2 (p < 0.0001). The prevalences of extracapsular invasion, portal tumor thrombi, and intrahepatic metastasis were higher in group 1 than in group 2 (p = 0.0085, p = 0.0319, and p = 0.0428, respectively). The tumor-free survival rate after operation was lower in group 1 than in group 2(p = 0.041 by the log-rank test; p = 0.032 by the generalized Wilcoxon test).

These findings indicate that in group 1, even though tumors were small, the carcinomas were advanced and the outcomes after surgery were poor, suggesting that alcohol affects the grade of malignancy of this disease.

Surgery 121 (4): 425-429 (1997)
Kubo S, Kinoshita H, Hirohashi K, Tanaka H, Tsukamoto T, Shuto T, Kuroki T
Second Department of Surgery, Osaka City University Medical School, Japan.
PMID: 9096628, MUID: 97250945

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