Multi-institutional development and external validation of a nomogram for prediction of extrahepatic recurrence after curative-intent resection for hepatocellular carcinoma

Tao Wei, Xu-Feng Zhang, Feng Xue, Fabio Bagante, Francesca Ratti, Hugo P. Marques, Silvia Silva, Olivier Soubrane, Vincent Lam, George A. Poultsides, Irinel Popescu, Razvan Grigorie, Sorin Alexandrescu, Guillaume Martel, Aklile Workneh, Alfredo Guglielmi, Tom Hugh, Luca Aldrighetti, Itaru Endo, Timothy M. Pawlik*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Backgrounds: Extrahepatic recurrence of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) after surgical resection is associated with unfavorable prognosis. The objectives of the current study were to identify the risk factors and develop a nomogram for the prediction of extrahepatic recurrence after initial curative surgery. Methods: A total of 635 patients who underwent curative-intent resection for HCC between 2000 and 2017 were identified from an international multi-institutional database. The clinicopathological characteristics, risk factors, and long-term survival of patients with extrahepatic recurrence were analyzed. A nomogram for the prediction of extrahepatic recurrence was established and validated in 144 patients from an external cohort. Results: Among the 635 patients in the derivative cohort, 283 (44.6%) experienced recurrence. Among patients who recurred, 80 (28.3%) patients had extrahepatic ± intrahepatic recurrence, whereas 203 (71.7%) had intrahepatic recurrence only. Extrahepatic recurrence was associated with more advanced initial tumor characteristics, early recurrence, and worse prognosis versus non-extrahepatic recurrence. A nomogram for the prediction of extrahepatic recurrence was developed using the β-coefficients from the identified risk factors, including neutrophil-to-lymphocyte ratio, multiple lesions, tumor size, and microvascular invasion. The nomogram demonstrated good ability to predict extrahepatic recurrence (c-index: training cohort 0.786; validation cohort: 0.845). The calibration plots demonstrated good agreement between estimated and observed extrahepatic recurrence (p = 0.658). Conclusions: An externally validated nomogram was developed with good accuracy to predict extrahepatic recurrence following curative-intent resection of HCC. This nomogram may help identify patients at high risk of extrahepatic recurrence and guide surveillance protocols as well as adjuvant treatments.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7624-7633
Number of pages10
JournalAnnals of Surgical Oncology
Issue number12
Early online date21 May 2021
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2021
Externally publishedYes

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