Outcome of treatment for distal bile duct cancer
Bile Duct Neoplasms
All patients with distal bile duct tumours over a 10-year period (October 1983 to December 1993) were identified by means of a prospective database. The medical records of 104 patients were reviewed. Univariate and multivariate analysis for predictors of outcome was performed. Median age of the patients was 65 (range 30-89) years. Patients presented with a clinical picture indistinguishable from that of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma. Twenty patients had no surgical treatment and 23 had a diagnostic laparotomy only. Biliary bypass was performed in 16 patients and radical resection was performed in 45 (pancreaticoduodenectomy, 39; bile duct excision, six). Operative mortality occurred in two of 45 patients having radical resection and complications in 17. Resection provided significant survival benefit. By univariate and multivariate analysis, resectability and negative node status (P < 0.001) were the only predictors of favourable outcome. Sex, age, preoperative stenting, grade of tumour and bilirubin level did not predict outcome. The 5-year survival rate for radically resected, node-negative tumours was 54 per cent. Surgical resection is effective therapy for distal bile duct tumours. These patients have a better outlook than those having resection of pancreatic adenocarcinoma.