The delivery of postoperative combined modality adjuvant therapy for completely resected pancreatic adenocarcinoma was initially shown to be beneficial based on a prospective, randomized trial published 30 years ago. Since then, oncologists have debated whether chemotherapy alone, chemoradiation, or both are optimal adjuvant therapies following pancreatectomy for pancreatic ductal adenocarcinomas (PDAC). No global consensus has emerged, and there is no one superior modality despite randomized trials in part, to poor trial design, poor patient selection, and poor therapy options itself. We need to have a disciplined approach to the selection of patients for pancreatectomy, pathologic assessment of surgical resection margins, and postoperative (pre-treatment) imaging. In the era of the multidetector CT optimized for pancreatic imaging, tumors of “borderline resectability” have emerged as a distinct subset of PDAC. The attempt to standardize the definition of borderline resectable is a work in progress and modified with time. This distinction (between resectable and borderline resectable) is essential to minimize potentially confounding results of clinical trials. Additionally, preoperative therapy is not only preferred but mandatory in a large population of borderline resectable patients. Ultimately, as we develop more effective systemic therapies for PDAC, proceeding with surgery after a period of induction therapy will be even more compelling especially if there is a clear positive impact on overall survival.
- Borderline resectable pancreatic adenocarcinoma
- Neoadjuvant treatment
- Pancreatic adenocarcinoma
- Preoperative treatment
ASJC Scopus subject areas