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UPMC Surgeons Perform Advanced HIPEC Procedure


February 22, 2024

HARRISBURG, Pa. — The team at UPMC Central PA Surgical Oncology has performed one of the most innovative procedures for advanced, metastatic cancer of the abdomen. Hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemoperfusion or HIPEC is a type of advanced cancer therapy that requires skilled surgical oncologists and is only performed at leading cancer centers.

“We’re very excited to expand our surgical oncology services and bring this advanced level of cancer care to this region and our patients,” Kyo Chu, M.D., director of Surgical Oncology for UPMC in Central Pa., said. “This is another example of how we can offer our patients advanced cancer care close to home.”

The HIPEC surgery is an advanced two-step procedure that surgically removes cancerous tumors and then applies heated chemotherapy drugs directly inside the abdomen to eliminate remaining cancer cells. This procedure can improve long-term outcomes for patients, has greater effectiveness at killing cancer cells in the abdomen, and provides fewer side-effects compared to traditional chemotherapy due to the targeted treatment.

UPMC Central PA Surgical Oncology’s first HIPEC procedure was performed at UPMC West Shore by Samer AlMasri, M.D., assisted by his partner, Chu, as well as Mohammad Haroon Asif Choudry, M.D., a surgical oncologist at UPMC Hillman Cancer Center in Pittsburgh. The patient, a 72-year-old man, is recovering well at home.

AlMasri earned his medical degree from the American University of Beirut, Lebanon. He completed his fellowship in complex surgical oncology at UPMC in Pittsburgh, working with Choudry. Choudry is a leader in innovative surgical care at UPMC, one of few institutions, nationally and internationally, that conduct high volume HIPEC procedures. Chu earned his medical degree and completed his residency in general surgery from the University of Texas Medical Branch, Texas. His fellowship in surgical oncology was completed at the John Wayne Cancer Institute, Calif., where he brings over 20 years of experience to the department.

Chu and AlMasri are continuing to bring advanced surgical cancer care to residents through the new UPMC Central PA Surgical Oncology in Mechanicsburg. In November, they, along with Amer Zuriekat, M.D., were the first surgeons to perform the robotic Whipple procedure for advanced pancreatic cancer in central Pennsylvania, further expanding innovative surgical oncology options to patients in this region. The expertise that these surgeons provide will broaden surgical oncology care for central Pennsylvanians.

To schedule an appointment with Dr. Chu or Dr. AlMasri, call 717-988-8451.

To learn more about surgery and cancer care in central Pennsylvania, visit

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