When surgery is not an option for the treatment of primary liver cancer (hepatocellular carcinoma, cholangiocarcinoma)
or metastatic cancer to the liver (colorectal cancer), patients should consider chemotherapy. However, current chemotherapy options for liver cancer are limited. Historically, response rates (tumor shrinkage) was uncommon, but new drugs are under investigation. One such drug, Sorafenib, has demonstrates promising results.
Chemotherapy typically requires administration of medication by vein in the arm. Some medications can be taken by pill or injection. Specific chemotherapy regimens can be very involved and side effects vary widely from patient to patient.
Targeted therapies are also being explored that will offer better therapy for some kinds of cancer involving the liver. These drugs are new and unique in that they interfere with protein or blood flow or receptors and they can prevent the tumor from growing. For example, researchers at Wake Forest Baptist Health are investigative a novel drug, CPI-613, for the treatment of metastatic colorectal cancer.
New therapies and new methods are being tried every day that can help to prevent liver cancer from progressing. A diagnosis of cancer today is not necessarily a death sentence. Learn about your cancer and possible treatment options that can help you to live a longer life.