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HPB Surgery
Volume 7 (1993), Issue 1, Pages 1-14

Histopathological Determinants of Survival in Resected Cases of Pancreas Cancer

1Department of Surgery, Division of Surgical Oncology, Mount Sinai Medical Center, New York, New York, USA
2Division of Surgical Oncology, Mount Sinai Medical Center, Dept of Surgery- Box 1259, 1 Gustave L. Levy Place, New York 10029, New York, USA

Accepted 21 January 1993

Copyright © 1993 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


We have examined the histopathological factors affecting the degree of local spread, regional lymph node (RLN) metastases, and overall survival (O.S.) in a group of 39 cases of resected carcinoma of the exocrine pancreas. Although the mean O.S. for the group was 14.3 months, resected patients without RLN involvement had a mean survival of 24 months. In contrast the mean O.S. rate was 8 months for patients with RLNs involved. Size, tumor location, and histological grade were compared to RLN involvement and O.S. The mean size of primary tumor did not differ significantly between patients with or without RLN's (r.1 versus 4.6cms). However, 7 or 8 T1 tumors were <4cm and 35% of tumors <4cm were T1 lesions. In contrast, only of 17 tumors (6%) >4cm was T1. Histological grade was correlated with nodal status and O.S. There was a significant difference between histological grade and the presence of metastatic lymph nodes (G1, 37% positive, G2-4.50% positive). Patients with well differentiated tumors had a mean survival of 21 months compared to a mean survival of 10 months for less differentiated tumors (p<0.05). This difference was even more significant when stratified for nodal status. The patients with well differentiated tumors and no RLN involvement had a mean survival of 32.5 months compared to 8.6 months for well differentiated tumors with RLN involvement. In summary, we have shown that size, histological grade, and local spread predict for nodal status. However, specific patient subsets (G1, node negative) may exhibit an excellent survival when curative pancreas resection is successful.