Table of Contents
HPB Surgery
Volume 4, Issue 3, Pages 223-236
Review Article

Selective Regional Chemotherapy of Unresectable Hepatic Tumours Using Lipiodol

Hepatobiliary and Liver Transplantation Unit, University Dept. of Surgery, Royal Free Hospital School of Medicine, Pond St, London NW3 2QG, UK

Received 6 November 1990; Accepted 6 January 1991

Copyright © 1991 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Over a 30 month period from 1987 to 1990, selective hepatic cannulation under fluoroscopic control was performed in 57 consecutive patients with primary and secondary malignancies of the liver. Fifty-three patients were subsequently treated using intra-arterial Lipiodol emulsified with epirubicin. The tumours treated were hepatocellular carcinoma (n = 35), metastatic adenocarcinoma (n = 14), intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma (n = 3) and leiomyosarcoma (n = 1). For hepatocellular carcinoma the cumulative survival was 38% at one year; the median survival was 12.2 months for Stage I, 6.3 months for Stage II and 0.9 months for Stage III tumours.

In metastatic disease the cumulative survival was 63% at one year.

These data suggest that targeted intra-arterial chemotherapy with Lipiodol-epirubicin is a useful palliative therapy for patients with Stage and II HCC, and that a controlled trial of this treatment should be undertaken.