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Sunday, July 29, 2012

Hepatic and Extrahepatic Malignancies in Cirrhosis Caused by Nonalcoholic Steatohepatitis and Alcoholic Liver Disease

To clarify the carcinogenic factors associated with steatohepatitis, we investigated the characteristic features of hepatic and extrahepatic malignancies in patients with cirrhotic nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH-LC) and cirrhotic alcoholic liver disease (ALD-LC).

A total of 72 patients with NASH-LC and 85 with ALD-LC (both biopsy-proven steatohepatitis without hepatocellular carcinoma [HCC]) were assessed with regard to the development of hepatic and extrahepatic malignancies. Risk factors for HCC were analyzed.

During follow-up, 10 NASH-LC patients and 6 ALD-LC patients developed HCC. The 5-year HCC development rate was similar for these 2 groups, being 10.5% in the NASH-LC group and 12.3% in the ALD-LC group. After adjusting for age and gender, the HCC development rates were also similar. Risk factors for HCC in the NASH-LC group were older age, higher γ-GTP level, and higher Child–Pugh score as determined by Cox hazards analysis. Regarding risk factors in the ALD-LC group, no risk factor was found by Cox hazards analysis, although diabetes mellitus led to a significantly higher HCC rate by log-rank test (p = 0.013). Regarding extrahepatic cancer, only 1 NASH-LC patient (1.4%) developed endometrial cancer. In contrast, 7 ALD-LC patients (8.2%) had other cancers (p = 0.052).

Comparison between NASH-LC and ALD-LC revealed similar HCC development curves. However, the risk factors for HCC and extrahepatic malignancies differed between the 2 diseases. In ALD-LC, the incidences of HCC and extrahepatic cancer are similar. When treating LC patients with NASH or ALD, the risk factors and extrahepatic malignancies associated with ALD-LC should be assessed.

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