RESEARCH: Researchers from the Royal Liverpool and Broadgreen University Hospitals Trust Royal have been pioneering an innovative new technique to treat patients with rare liver cancer hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) that can extend their life expectancy and reduce side effects.

The treatment called ‘TACE’ delivers small ‘beads’ of chemotherapy into the patient via keyhole surgery and are then directed to affected areas via x-ray. The treatment means patients with liver cancer, who are not suitable for open surgery, have a better chance of survival.

A study of patients with HCC showed in 50 per cent of patients the size of the tumour was reduced and in a further 25 per cent the tumour stopped growing during the time of the study.

Consultant radiologist Dr Jonathan Evans said, “Evidence from this study suggests that life expectancy could be extended quite considerably using this new technique, whilst side effects from chemotherapy such as nausea have been greatly reduced.”