SAMJ: South African Medical Journal
On-line version ISSN 2078-5135
Print version ISSN 0256-9574
MILLAR, A J W. Liver tumours in children: current surgical management and role of transplantation. SAMJ, S. Afr. med. j. [online]. 2014, vol.104, n.11, pp.813-815. ISSN 2078-5135. http://dx.doi.org/10.7196/SAMJ.8919.
This article reviews the current surgical management of liver tumours in children in the light of improved chemotherapy, surgical techniques and outcomes from transplantation. It is a principle of management that complete removal of a tumour must be achieved for cure. Neoadjuvant chemotherapy may downstage advanced local disease to enable safe curative tumour resection. When this is not achievable, transplant is indicated. Conventional indications for transplant are unresectable stages 3 and 4 tumours confined to the liver. With the realisation that lifelong immunosuppressive therapy has considerable adverse consequences, there has been a recent trend towards extreme and 'acrobatic' liver resection to avoid transplantation, but still obtain a cure. The current literature is reviewed in the light of these trends and our own experience.