Assessment of the Albumin-Bilirubin (ALBI) Grade as a Prognostic Indicator for Hepatocellular Carcinoma Patients Treated With Radioembolization

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Abstract

Objective:

As the utility of Child-Pugh (C-P) class is limited by the subjectivity of ascites and encephalopathy, we evaluated a previously established objective method, the albumin-bilirubin (ALBI) grade, as a prognosticator for yttrium-90 radioembolization (RE) treatment for patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC).

Materials and Methods:

A total of 117 patients who received RE for HCC from 2 academic centers were reviewed and stratified by ALBI grade, C-P class, and Barcelona Clinic Liver Cancer stage. The overall survival (OS) according to these 3 criteria was evaluated by Kaplan-Meier survival analysis. The utilities of C-P class and ALBI grade as prognostic indicators were compared using the log-rank test. Multivariate Cox regression analysis was performed to identify additional predictive factors.

Results:

Patients with ALBI grade 1 (n=49) had superior OS than those with ALBI grade 2 (n=65) (P=0.01). Meanwhile, no significant difference was observed in OS between C-P class A (n=100) and C-P class B (n=14) (P=0.11). For C-P class A patients, the ALBI grade (1 vs. 2) was able to stratify 2 clear and nonoverlapping subgroups with differing OS curves (P=0.03). Multivariate Cox regression test identified alanine transaminase, Barcelona Clinic Liver Cancer stage, and ALBI grade as the strongest prognostic factors for OS (P<0.10).

Conclusions:

ALBI grade as a prognosticator has demonstrated clear survival discrimination that is superior to C-P class among HCC patients treated with RE, particularly within the subgroup of C-P class A patients. ALBI grade is useful for clinicians to make decisions as to whether RE should be recommended to patients with HCC.

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