Rate of Nonsurveillance and Advanced Hepatocellular Carcinoma at Diagnosis in Chronic Liver Disease

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Abstract

Aims:

Ultrasound surveillance for hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is recommended in cirrhotic patients to allow early diagnosis. This study investigated risk factors for nonsurveillance and advanced HCC at diagnosis and their effect on survival.

Materials and Methods:

Two hundred seventy HCC patients were included. Clinical data were collected from hospital databases.

Results:

One hundred twenty-eight (47.1%) patients had 6-monthly ultrasound surveillance before HCC diagnosis. Ninety-two (34.1%) patients had advanced HCC (multifocal or total diameter ≥6 cm) at diagnosis. The nonsurveillance rate was significantly higher in nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) (79%) compared with other causes of chronic liver disease (31.6% to 58.1%, P<0.001). Nonrecognition of NAFLD was significantly higher (68.4%) compared with other causes of chronic liver disease (0% to 23.2%, P<0.001). In NAFLD HCC patients, 23.7% were noncirrhotic and smoking was significantly associated HCC in this noncirrhotic group (P=0.041). No-surveillance for HCC was significantly associated with advanced HCC at diagnosis with an odds ratio (OR) of 8.1. Compared with nondrinkers, heavy alcohol consumption was significantly associated with advanced HCC (OR=7.6). In the surveillance group, diagnosis using computed tomography rather than magnetic resonance imaging was significantly associated with advanced HCC (OR=3.36). Patients without HCC surveillance had a significantly shorter median survival compared with those who had HCC surveillance (27.4 vs. 52.0 mo, P=0.0006).

Conclusions:

The lack of HCC surveillance is associated with advanced HCC at diagnosis and decreased survival. NAFLD patients with HCC have a significantly lower rate of diagnosis of chronic liver disease and HCC surveillance compared with the other causes of chronic liver disease.

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