, Volume 16, Issue 3, pp 389-397
Date: 17 Nov 2006

Quality of life after radiofrequency ablation combined with transcatheter arterial chemoembolization for hepatocellular carcinoma: comparison with transcatheter arterial chemoembolization alone

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Comprehensive studies are scarce with regard to the quality of life (QOL) of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) patients after transcatheter arterial chemoembolization (TACE) and/or radiofrequency ablation (RFA) treatment. The purpose of this study was to examine the impact of TACE alone and that of the TACE followed by RFA (TACE–RFA) on QOL in HCC patients.


QOL was measured using the Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy-General (FACT-G) (Version 4.0) questionnaire, translated into Chinese, as a measure of QOL among Chinese HCC patients. Prospectively, 83 patients in both TACE group (n = 40) and TACE–RFA group (n = 43) completed the questionnaire at baseline and 3 months after treatment, respectively.


The TACE–RFA group resulted in a significantly higher total QOL score, socio-family well-being score, and functional well-being score than that of TACE group, 3 months after respective treatment. Liver function, tumor recurrence and complication, age, income were the most important factors affecting the QOL of HCC patients after treatment. The logistic regression analyses showed that Child-Pugh Class and tumor recurrence after treatment were independent predictors of post-treatment QOL scores of HCC patients.


The overall QOL of HCC patients in TACE–RFA group was maintained at a relatively higher level than that of TACE group. TACE followed by RFA appeared to be more favorable than TACE alone with respect to QOL.