There are different treatments available for Liver Cancer depending on the stage of the cancer as well as the health of your liver. Treatment options may include:
Suitable patients may undergo liver resection surgery which involves the surgical removal of the tumour and surrounding liver tissue from the liver. Patients with small tumours may also be suitable for a liver transplant.
A procedure which destroys the tumour without removing the liver. High-energy beams travel down a thin metal probe that is inserted into the liver and through the tumour. Ultrasound is used to guide the probe into place and the heat that is emitted destroys the tumour.
Chemotherapy is the use of anti-cancer drugs to destroy cancer cells or stop them from dividing. It may be administered as part of a treatment called chemoembolisation. Chemoembolisation involves the insertion of chemotherapy drugs directly into the tumour in the liver, together with a gel or tiny plastic beads to block blood flow to the cancer (embolisation). Embolisation prevents the tumour from growing as it is deprived of blood.
Selective Internal Radiation Therapy
Selective Internal Radiation Therapy is a technique that involves the use of many tiny beads in delivering extremely high dosages of radiation. The radiation travels directly to the tumour through the hepatic artery. This limits the amount of radiation that the normal tissue in the liver is exposed to.
NanoKnife is a minimally invasive cancer treatment that uses a targeted approach to treating hard to reach tumours at the cellular level. It relies on the body's natural healing ability to replace cancer cells once they are destroyed, so it leaves almost no scarring. NanoKnife works by applying electrical energy directly into tumours. This opens the cell walls of the tumour; the cancer cells die, and healthy tissue remains unharmed. NanoKnife serves as an alternative treatment approach to thermal ablation which kills cells with extreme heat or cold. NanoKnife can destroy tumours that may not be treatable with surgery or radiation therapy. Patients undergo general anesthesia and experience little pain following the procedure. Treatment requires only a brief hospital stay.
Targeted Cancer Therapy
Targeted cancer therapy uses drugs or other substances that block the growth and spread of cancer by interfering with specific molecules involved in cancer growth and progression. A targeted drug called sorafenib may be used to treat patients with advanced Liver Cancer. Sorafenib targets cancers by stopping them from growing their own blood vessels. As cancer cells need a blood supply to bring nutrients and oxygen, sorafenib may therefore limit the cancer’s ability to develop.
Sorafenib has been demonstrated to prolong survival in patients with advanced HCC, compared with supportive care alone. Sorafenib is an oral treatment and is usually taken twice a day.