2018 Volume 61 Issue 4 Pages 197-203
Background The neutrophil lymphocyte ratio (NLR) has been proposed to be a surrogate marker of inflammation and immunological status and to have prognostic value in various malignancies. This study was conducted to clarify the prognostic significance of preoperative NLR in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC).
Methods We enrolled 135 patients with histologically-proven HCC who underwent initial curative hepatectomy. Based on the median NLR values, patients were divided into: NLR ≥ 2.0 (NLR-high, n = 69) and NLR < 2.0 (NLR-low, n = 66).
Results In univariate analysis, the 5-year overall survival (OS) rates were 59.8 % ± 6.7% and 75.6% ± 6.5% (P = 0.028) in the NLR-high and NLR-low groups, respectively. Furthermore, the 5-year disease specific survival rates were 68.6% ± 6.7%, and 81.2 ± 6.4% (P = 0.048) in the NLR-high and NLR-low groups, respectively.
Conclusion Our results showed that high NLR was an independent predictor for OS in hepatectomy-treated HCC, suggesting that NLR may be a novel prognostic biomarker for HCC. On the other hand, NLR also has a limitation to predict postoperative prognosis of HCC patients by itself.