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Ann Surg Treat Res. 2019 Jan;96(1):19-26. English. Original Article.
You Y , Choi DW , Heo JS , Han IW , Choi SH , Jang KT , Han S , Han SH .
Department of Surgery, Konkuk University Choongju Hospital, Konkuk University School of Medicine, Chungju, Korea.
Department of Surgery, Samsung Medical Center, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
Department of Surgery, Samsung Changwon Hospital, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Changwon, Korea.
Department of Pathology and Translational Genomics, Samsung Medical Center, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
Department of Surgery, Seoul National University Bundang Hospital, Seoul National University College of Medicine, Seongnam, Korea.
Department of Hepatobiliary and Pancreatic Surgery, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.


Recent studies have suggested microscopic positive resection margin should be revised according to the presence of tumor cells within 1mm of the margin surface in resected specimens of pancreatic cancer. However, the clinical meaning of this revised margin status for R1 resection margin was not fully clarified.


From July 2012 to December 2014, the medical records of 194 consecutive patients who underwent pancreaticoduodenectomy for ductal adenocarcinoma of the pancreatic head were analyzed retrospectively. They were divided into 3 groups on margin status; revised microscopic negative margin (rR0) – tumor exists more than 1 mm from surgical margin, revised microscopic positive margin (rR1) – tumor present within less than 1 mm from surgical margin, classic microscopic positive margin (cR1) – tumor is exposed to surgical margin.


There were 76 rR0 (39.2%), 100 rR1 (51.5%), and 18 cR1 (9.3%). There was significant difference in disease-free survival rates between cR1 vs. rR1 (8.4 months vs. 24.0 months, P = 0.013). Margin status correlated with local recurrence rate (17.1% in rR0, 26.0% in rR1, and 44.4% in cR1, P = 0.048). There is significant difference in recurrence at tumor bed (11.8% in rR0 vs. 23.0 in rR1, P = 0.050). Of rR1, adjuvant treatment was found to be an independent risk factor for local recurrence (hazard ratio, 0.297; 95% confidence interval, 0.127–0.693, P = 0.005).


Revised R1 resection margin (rR1) affects recurrence at the tumor bed. Adjuvant treatment significantly reduced local recurrence of rR1. Accordingly, adjuvant chemoradiation for rR1 group should be taken into account.

Copyright © 2019. Korean Association of Medical Journal Editors.