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Therapeutic strategies for hepatic metastasis of colorectal cancer: overview

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  • Therapeutic strategies for hepatic metastasis of colorectal cancer: 2011 Update
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Journal of Hepato-Biliary-Pancreatic Sciences


To determine the treatment strategy for hepatic metastases of colorectal cancer, it is important to take into account whether metastases are still localized in the liver, or whether the tumor has metastasized throughout the body. For liver-limited metastasis, hepatectomy is the therapeutic strategy that offers the best prospect of improving a patient’s prognosis if the case is deemed resectable. In cases when surgery is not indicated for hepatic metastases of colorectal cancer, chemotherapy is the first-choice treatment. Chemotherapy for colorectal cancer has made vast strides in recent years through advances such as the development of molecular targeted drugs. In cases where chemotherapy is effective and surgical resection becomes possible (conversion chemotherapy), the long-term prognosis may be good. The value of preoperative chemotherapy in resectable cases (neoadjuvant chemotherapy) has also been reported. The improvement in prognosis achieved by eradicating tiny latent metastases is important in conversion therapy, as well as in neoadjuvant chemotherapy. It will be important to achieve further improvements in the prognoses of patients with hepatic metastases of colorectal cancer through a combination of advances in diagnostic imaging, improvements in surgical techniques, and more effective chemotherapy treatments.

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Correspondence to Kenichi Sugihara.

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Sugihara, K., Uetake, H. Therapeutic strategies for hepatic metastasis of colorectal cancer: overview. J Hepatobiliary Pancreat Sci 19, 523–527 (2012).

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