Aims: Patients with locally advanced gastrointestinal stromal tumours (GISTs) have a high risk of tumour perforation, incomplete tumour resections and often require multivisceral resections. Long-term disease-free and overall survival is usually impaired in this group of patients. Induction therapy with imatinib followed by surgery seems to be beneficial in terms of improved surgical results and long-term outcome. We report on a large cohort of locally advanced GIST patients who have been treated in four centres in the Netherlands specialized in the treatment of sarcomas. Methods: Between August 2001 and June 2011, 57 patients underwent surgery for locally advanced GISTs after imatinib treatment. Data of all patients were retrospectively collected. Endpoints were progression-free and overall survival. Results: The patients underwent surgery after a median of 8 (range 1-55) months of imatinib treatment. Median tumour size before treatment was 12.2 (range 5.2-30) cm and reduced to 6.2 (range 1-20) cm before surgery. No tumour perforation occurred and a surgical complete (R0) resection was achieved in 48 (84%) patients. Five-year PFS and OS were 77% and 88%. Eight patients had recurrent/metastatic disease. Conclusions: Imatinib in locally advanced GIST is feasible and enables a high complete resection rate without tumour rupture. The combination of imatinib and surgery in patients with locally advanced GIST seems to improve PFS and OS.

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European Journal of Surgical Oncology
Department of Surgery

Tielen, R, Verhoef, C, van Coevorden, F, Gelderblom, H, Sleijfer, S, Hartgrink, H.H, … de Wilt, J.H.W. (2013). Surgical treatment of locally advanced, non-metastatic, gastrointestinal stromal tumours after treatment with imatinib. European Journal of Surgical Oncology, 39(2), 150–155. doi:10.1016/j.ejso.2012.09.004