Clinical research methodologies in diagnosis and staging of patients with peritoneal carcinomatosis

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Abstract

Productive research in patients with peritoneal carcinomatosis has moved slowly over several decades. In large part this was due to lack of standardized assessments by which cancer responses could be quantitated in a reliable and statistically evaluable manner. Recently, both laboratory and clinical assessments have been developed. Clinical research has shown that the prognosis of patients with peritoneal carcinomatosis is dependent upon preoperative and intraoperative variables [1]. These are the histologic grade of the malignancy, the preoperative tumor volume as assessed at surgery, the distribution of tumor at surgery, and the completeness of cytoreductive surgery. Also the preoperative abdominal and pelvic computed tomography (CT) scan has shown predictive value in assessment of the completeness of cytoreduction in patients with mucinous carcinomatosis [2]. The clinical research tools that are currently used in peritoneal carcinomatosis studies are reviewed in this manuscript.