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Dr. Andrew Rynne

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How effective is immunotherapy for treating liver cancer?

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Dr. Ivan R. Rommstein

General Surgeon

Practicing since :2008

Answered : 11334 Questions

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Posted on Tue, 21 Mar 2017 in Cancer
Question: Does anyone know about immunotherapy for liver cancer? What options should we be looking for? My father-in-law has stage 3 hepatoma with a 6.8 tumor in the right lobe. We are looking for some alternative treatment options, outside of radioembolization-which is currently the only option we are being offered.
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Answered by Dr. Ivan R. Rommstein 31 minutes later
Brief Answer:
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Detailed Answer:
Hi and welcome to HCM

I am sorry about your father and tis serious diagnosis. First, I must say that immunotherapy for this type of cancer doesnt show good result which are no better than other palliative measures such as chemotherapy or chemoembolization. There are some promising immunotherapy protocols such as Nivolumab and Sorafenib which are still no routinely used and require further clinical research. In every case, any palliative measure may just minimally slow the disease progression and surgical resection or liver transplantation are only procedure which may be curative or prolong his life for 1-2 years, This size tumor,is usually resectable and if he is in a good general condition ,then hemihepatectomy can be performed. Only if there is infiltration of portal vein , hepatic artery or vena cava, then this is inoperable. Also, some centres offer liver translantation for tumors up to 7cm... Wish you good health. Regards
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Yogesh D
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Follow up: Dr. Ivan R. Rommstein 2 hours later
Thank you for you insight. He is currently at Mayo and since my previous question, they have come back to us with the Sorafenib option. So it is good to hear from another source on this. Could you recommend somewhere that offers the transplantation for tumors up to 7cm? We have an appointment at MD XXXXXXX in XXXXXXX TX next week. Anything new that we should be asking about or questioning as options would be greatly appreciated. Thank you!
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Answered by Dr. Ivan R. Rommstein 16 hours later
Brief Answer:
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Detailed Answer:
Hi again,

Will, it is hard to comment it precisely without findings and scan images. I am from Europe so I am not familiar with USA transplantation centers but here, we would consider transplantation if there are no extrahepatic metastasis and his cardiopulmonary condition is fine.

I believe that there is no better place than XXXXXXX for advice. Sorafenib has limited efficiency but it is worth of try. However, I must say that prognosis is poor and miraculous recovery is unlikely.

Good palliative care with treatment of pain and prevention of jaundice would ensure him good quality of rest of life and it would be also a satisfactory result.

Hope this helps

Wish you good health
Regards


Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Arnab Banerjee
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