Prognosis and prognostic factors in patients with advanced biliary tract cancer depending on its anatomical location

Objective: Previous studies have revealed that biliary tract cancer (BTC) has different clinical characteristics depending on its anatomical location. However, clinical studies about the prognosis of BTC according to its anatomical location are lacking. We aimed to compare the prognosis of BTC according to its anatomical location.

Methods: We retrospectively reviewed records of 311 patients with advanced BTC who received gemcitabine based palliative chemotherapy from January 2006 to December 2015 at Samsung medical Center.

Results: During median follow-up of 7.67 months, the median overall survival (OS) times for patients with gallbladder (GB) cancer, intrahepatic cholangiocellular carcinoma (ICCC) and extrahepatic cholangiocellular carcinoma (ECCC) were 8.1 months, 7.7 months and 13.4 months, respectively. Median progression free survival (PFS) times for those with GB cancer, ICCC and ECCC were 4.1 months, 5.4 months and 7.2 months respectively. In multivariate analysis, anatomical location of cancer was a statistically significant factor for OS and PFS (p < .001). Prognostic factors associated with OS were also different according to the anatomical location of cancer: CA 19-9 and chemotherapy response for GB cancer; disease status, albumin and chemotherapy response for ICCC; performance status and chemotherapy response for ECCC.

Conclusions: Prognosis and prognostic factors of BTC were significantly different depending on its anatomical location.