Open Access Research article

Systemic chemotherapy for treatment of advanced small bowel adenocarcinoma with prognostic factor analysis: retrospective study

Dong Hoe Koo1, Sung-Cheol Yun2, Yong Sang Hong1, Min-Hee Ryu1, Jae-Lyun Lee1, Heung-Moon Chang1, Baek-Yeol Ryoo1, Yoon-Koo Kang1 and Tae Won Kim1*

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Oncology, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Asan Medical Center, Seoul, Korea

2 Department of Biostatistics and Clinical Epidemiology, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Asan Medical Center, Seoul, Korea

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BMC Cancer 2011, 11:205  doi:10.1186/1471-2407-11-205

Published: 27 May 2011



We sought to evaluate prognostic factors affecting overall survival (OS), and to investigate the role of palliative chemotherapy using propensity score-based weighting, in patients with advanced small bowel adenocarcinoma (SBA).


Data from a total of 91 patients diagnosed with advanced SBA at the Asan Medical Center between January 1989 and December 2009 were retrospectively analyzed. Patients were split into two groups, those who did and did not receive palliative chemotherapy.


Overall, 81 patients (89.0%) died, at a median survival time of 6.6 months (95% confidence interval [CI], 5.5 - 7.5 months). The 40 patients receiving chemotherapy showed overall response and disease control rates of 11.1% and 37.0%, respectively, with OS and progression-free survival (PFS) of 11.8 months (95% CI, 4.6 - 19.0 months) and 5.7 months (95% CI, 3.5 - 8.0 months), respectively. The 41 patients who did not receive chemotherapy had an OS of 4.1 months (95% CI, 3.1 - 5.1 months) and a PFS of 1.3 months (95% CI, 0.8 - 1.7 months). Multivariate analysis showed that lack of tumor resection, non-prescription of chemotherapy, liver metastasis, and intra-abdominal lymph node metastasis, were all independently associated with poor survival outcomes. After inverse probability of treatment weighting (IPTW) adjustment, the group that did not receive chemotherapy was at a significantly higher risk of mortality (HR 3.44, 95% CI 2.03 - 5.83, p < 0.001) than were patients receiving chemotherapy.


Palliative chemotherapy may improve survival outcomes in patients with advanced SBA.

small intestine; adenocarcinoma; chemotherapy; propensity score