Many types of cancer, including those of the head and neck, colon and rectum, breast, lung, esophagus, and pancreas, can spread to the liver. Since blood from all parts of the body must pass through the liver for filtration, cancer cells from other organs and tissues that reach the liver can lodge and grow into secondary tumors.
"We liken the liver to the body's
"Typically invasive open surgery and chemotherapy have been the two main options for controlling liver metastases; but due to patients' immune systems being compromised or because they are weak, aged, and/or frail, many cannot withstand open surgery," says Dr. Yang. "That is what makes our study and the potential benefits of proton therapy so important. We are in Phase 1 of the study, and our initial results are looking promising. Thus far our patients are showing significant tumor reduction without adverse side effects."
It is estimated that two-thirds of patients with metastatic breast cancer eventually will present with spread to the liver. Of the more than 150,000 new cases of colorectal cancer that are predicted to occur in
Approximately 60 percent of cancer patients with metastases require radiation. However, the liver can easily be damaged by administering too much radiation. That is why radiation oncologists are interested in developing advanced treatment options - such as proton therapy - for cases that have spread to the liver.
The liver metastases study taking place at LLUMC is currently enrolling qualified patients. For more information about the study, please contact the
Keywords for this news article include: Drugs, Cancer, Surgery, Hospital, Oncology, Treatment, Chemotherapy, Radiotherapy, X-Ray Therapy,
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