Liver Cancer at UPMC Hamot - Transcript
At UPMC Hamot we are now utilizing local, regional, therapeutic techniques to treat liver cancer. We are trying to utilize ablative techniques such as heating the tumor to a certain point where it actually kills the tumor cells.
We also have chemoembolization where we take a small microcatheter and place it into the arteries of the liver near the tumor itself and deliver chemotherapy on small beads that both block the blood flow and allow the chemotherapy to release over time to shrink or actually kill the tumor itself. The advantages of utilizing thermal ablation techniques in patients with early stage liver cancer include a single day treatment typically, with an overnight admission to monitor the patient’s symptoms. The benefit of chemoembolization is one to three single day treatments with an overnight admission for each of those treatments, again to monitor the patient’s symptoms and to make them comfortable as we are giving them hydration overnight. We typically discharge the patients the following day after the procedure. In this region UPMC Hamot is the only one utilizing thermal ablative techniques or chemoembolization techniques to treat liver cancer.
At UPMC Hamot we utilize a multidisciplinary team to evaluate and determine a treatment option for patients with liver cancer. This multidisciplinary team includes oncologists, gastroenterologists, surgeons, interventional radiologists and pathologists. This team utilizes the information of the patient, determines the stage of their disease and formulates the best individual treatment plan for that patient.