Treatment of Stage 3 Liver Cancer

The kind of treatment that is given for this stage depends on a number of factors like, in which cells the cancer started, where the cancer is present and the overall health of the person.

Visual representation of a liver being infected by cancer

At stage 3, liver cancer, is little more advanced than the other two stages and this stage has a varied list of treatments that can be done for the patient. Usually stage 3 tumors are not suitable for Surgical resection and liver transplantation. These treatments include:

Radiofrequency ablation (RFA)

In the procedure of a radiofrequency ablation, high energy radio waves are used to kill tumors. A CT scan or ultrasound is used to guide a needle like instrument through the skin and into the tumor. An electric current is passed to the tip of the instrument, releasing high frequency radio waves that heat the tumor and kill the cells.

Microwave Ablation

This kind if treatment is similar to that of radiofrequency ablation but the energy waves used are different and they are known as microwaves. The microwaves heat up and kill the cancer cells in the liver. This treatment can be given if the person has more than one liver tumor.

Chemotherapy directly to the liver (chemoembolization/ TACE)

Chemotherapy is the use of cytotoxic or anticancer drugs to kill cancer cells. The most common ways used to give chemotherapy include the intravenous method where the tube is placed into the vein using a needle or the chemotherapy drugs can be taken orally by the patient. Chemotherapy may be given after surgery to kill any remaining cancer cells.

Chemotherapy may be given directly to the liver and this process is also known as chemoembolization. This procedure is usually done if the person is not healthy for surgery or it may be given to slow down the cancer while the person is waiting for a liver transplant. This procedure might also be done to shrink the tumor to a size where it can be surgically removed.

Biological therapy/ Targeted Therapy

Biological therapy is known as a treatment that acts on the different processes in the cells. This treatment can even change the way cells signal each other sometimes and they can even stimulate the body to attack cancer cells or control the growth of them.
At this stage, a kind of biological therapy known as sorafenib may be given to control the growth of the cancer.

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