Hepatocellular carcinoma in a low-endemic area: Rising incidence and improved survival

Caroline D.M. Witjes, Henrike E. Karim-Kos, Otto Visser, Sanne A.W. Van Den Akker, Esther De Vries, Jan N.M. Ijzermans, Robert A. De Man, Jan Willem W. Coebergh, Cornelis Verhoef

Onderzoeksoutput: Bijdrage aan tijdschriftArtikelpeer review

26 Citaten (Scopus)


Objective To examine recent trends in incidence and outcome among patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) in an unselected population in Western Europe. Methods Data from the nationwide Netherlands Cancer Registry were used to estimate trends in incidence for all 6514 patients newly diagnosed with primary liver cancer between 1989 and 2009. Trends in incidence, treatment, and relative survival according to sex and age were estimated in 5143 patients with HCC, also using the European Standardized Rates (ESR). Results The ESR for all primary liver cancers combined increased significantly between 1989 and 2009 as did the ESR for HCC among men (estimated annual percentage change: 2.2%, 95% confidence interval: 1.6-2.7) and for women aged below 60 years, suggesting etiological influences in these groups. Especially, the nonhistologically confirmed HCC incidence increased. More patients underwent surgery for HCC, from 9% in 1989-1994 to 23% in 2005-2009, as well as chemotherapy and/or irradiation, from 6 to 11% in the same period. At the end of the study period, only 66% of patients received noncancer-related HCC therapy, that is, best supportive care, compared with 85% in 1989-1994. The 1 and 5-year relative survival for patients with HCC increased significantly (P < 0.001 and P <0.001). Conclusion In as much as the modest increase in the incidence of HCC was a matter of better detection, due to improved imaging techniques, which may have affected the overall relative survival for HCC patients, the increasing trend in survival is likely to be, in the absence of other explanations, due to better treatment of the underlying liver cirrhosis.

Originele taal-2Engels
Pagina's (van-tot)450-457
Aantal pagina's8
TijdschriftEuropean Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology
Nummer van het tijdschrift4
StatusGepubliceerd - apr. 2012
Extern gepubliceerdJa


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