OBJECTIVE: Arterial resection (AR) during pancreatic tumor resection is controversial. We examined the safety and efficacy of AR during pancreatectomy.
METHODS: We used a prospective institutional database that includes 6522 patients who underwent pancreatectomy from 1970 to 2014; 35 had AR. We performed a 2:1 propensity match for patients without and with AR on the basis of preoperative patient and tumor variables. We then compared operative and postoperative outcomes between matched groups.
RESULTS: AR included 18 hepatic, 8 celiac, 3 splenic, 3 middle colic, 2 superior mesenteric, and 1 left renal artery. There were 20 primary, 4 vein, and 2 graft reconstructions; 11 were emergent and 24 elective. Before matching, patients with AR were younger (58 ± 2 vs 63 ± 0.2 years old; P = .05), more likely to be of black race (26% vs 9%; P = .003), to have received preoperative chemotherapy (17% vs 2%; P <.001), have a later stage and larger tumor (4 ± 0.8 vs 3 ± 0.04 cm; P = .05), more resections that included removal of all macroscopic disease, but microscopic residual tumor remained (31% vs 14%; P = .02), greater blood loss (1285 ± 276 vs 822 ± 16 mL; P = .02), and more frequent cardiac complications (11% vs 4%; P = .03) compared with patients without AR. After propensity matching, baseline patient characteristics were similar between groups. For perioperative outcomes, the groups did not differ in surgical time, blood loss, length of stay, or complications including anastomotic leaks, bleeding, cardiac, infectious complications, or liver infarct or failure (all; P = not significant). Patency was 97% at a mean follow-up of 510 ± 184 days with 1 hepatic artery AR thrombosis. Long-term outcomes were significantly different: patients with AR had a lower rate of local tumor recurrence (20% vs 47%; P = .007) but also lower 1-year (50% vs 87%; P = .002) and median survival (22 ± 18 vs 49 ± 7 months; P = .002).
CONCLUSIONS: AR during pancreatectomy is safe and not associated with increased complications. Although it significantly reduces the risk of local tumor recurrence, AR is associated with worse survival compared with patients who do not undergo AR.
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