Wednesday, September 4, 2013

New approaches for Liver Cancer Treatment provides renewed hope

In Taiwan, recently clinical experts outlined promising new approaches to treating liver cancer using radiosurgery with advanced imaging and motion management technology. Presentations on non-invasive radiosurgical approaches to treating hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) were made by leading clinicians last week at a medical meeting organised in Taipei.

HCC, the most common type of liver cancer, is globally the third leading cause of cancer mortality after lung and stomach cancer, and a significant problem in Taiwan, mainland China, and other parts of Asia. Most patients with HCC are not eligible for surgery or liver transplant and currently there is not much done with radiotherapy for the liver cancer patients as there is a lack of ability to focus the dose on the tumor and minimize exposure of the rest of the liver. That will potentially change with advanced approaches like stereotactic ablative radiotherapy (SABR).

Stereotactic ablative radiotherapy (SABR) is a type of radiosurgery that involves the careful use of modern technologies for 3-D image guidance, motion management, and beam shaping. SABR can be customized for for each patient according to a model that has been developed based on treatment data from over large number of HCC cases. This model helps determine the optimal radiation dose to use given the volume of liver to be treated. High doses can be given safely if enough normal liver can be spared.


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