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A Journal on Surgery

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Minerva Chirurgica 2012 August;67(4):309-18

language: English

Cytoreductive surgery and hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy for colorectal cancer

Newman N. A., Votanopoulos K. I., Stewart J. H., Shen P., Levine E. A.

Surgical Oncology Service, Department of General Surgery, Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem, NC, USA


Peritoneal carcinomatosis (PC) arising from colorectal cancer (CRC) is generally considered a terminal condition with few treatment options. However, over the past few decades, new chemotherapeutic and biologic agents have improved the median overall survival of patients with unresectable metastatic disease up to 20 months. There has also been emergence of combining cytoreductive surgery (CS) with hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy (HIPEC) for patients with PC. The literature supporting such an approach is significant, though not extensive, mainly consisting of small single-institution series, one international multicenter retrospective review, and one single-institution prospective randomized trial. Yet, there is remarkable homogeneity among the reported clinical outcomes, demonstrating 5-year OS rates of approximately 25-40% for patients undergoing a complete cytoreduction. These studies have fueled increasing interest in the use of CS and HIPEC for metastatic colorectal cancer over the past decade. However, despite the publication of a consensus statement on the role of CS and HIPEC for PC from CRC, there is still controversy regarding its appropriateness, effectiveness, safety, and application in this subset of patients. In this review we analyze the currently available scientific evidence supporting the clinical application of CS and HIPEC in the treatment of PC of colorectal origin.

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