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HIPEC at Cleveland Clinic
What is HIPEC?
HIPEC stands for Hyperthermic (or Heated) Intraoperative Peritoneal Chemotherapy. HIPEC is used to treat cancers that have spread to the lining of the abdominal cavity, such as those of the appendix, colon, stomach and ovaries. HIPEC is an alternative and innovative method of delivering chemotherapy, which is commonly used to treat many types of cancer, to the body. Unlike traditional chemotherapy that is delivered intravenously, HIPEC delivers chemotherapy directly into the abdomen making it a good option for cancers that originated in or have spread to the abdominal cavity.
How does HIPEC work?
First, your surgeon removes any visible tumors from the abdomen. Next, HIPEC delivers heated chemotherapy directly inside the abdomen to help destroy any remaining cancer cells and very small tumors that cannot be seen by the surgeon. This is because the chemotherapy circulates inside the abdomen, allowing it to reach more places. The goal of HIPEC is to prevent these cells from growing into new tumors and causing the cancer to return.
What are the benefits of HIPEC procedures?
• HIPEC allows for a higher concentration of chemotherapy to be delivered into the abdomen more effectively and safer than standard chemotherapy, which is delivered intravenously.
• This type of chemotherapy is best at killing cancer cells that are too small to be seen with the naked eye.
• Chemotherapy delivered through HIPEC causes fewer side effects than intravenous chemotherapy. This is because the high concentrations of chemotherapy solution are unable to cross what is known as the peritoneal plasma barrier.
• Experts say that pairing surgery and HIPEC together may be more beneficial than chemotherapy alone.
Am I a candidate for HIPEC?
Typical HIPEC patients are those with certain Stage IV abdominal cancers. Many are seeking an alternative to traditional chemotherapy or radiation therapy, as these options offer limited success treating advanced abdominal cancers. Patients also may have been told that no other treatment will work, but are still hoping to find a solution. But HIPEC is not for everyone. At Cleveland Clinic’s Digestive Disease & Surgery Institute (DDSI), our multidisciplinary team of experts can conduct a thorough evaluation to determine if you are a candidate. In addition to having Stage IV abdominal cancers, other factors that will be considered include any other existing medical conditions, the location of the cancer, surgical history and the patient’s overall physical strength.
What’s next if I’m not a candidate?
If you are not a candidate, you can continue care with your local medical oncologist or can consult with a medical oncologist at Cleveland Clinic’s Taussig Cancer Institute to discuss the best next step for you.
Why come to Cleveland Clinic?
Cleveland Clinic’s DDSI is one of few programs in the country that perform the HIPEC procedure. We currently have the only program in Ohio with FDA approval to perform the procedure. Our DDSI not only has experience with this complicated procedure, but it has a rich history
of mastering innovative surgical techniques and offering cutting-edge treatment options.
By choosing us, you also will benefit from being cared for by a multidisciplinary program that unites all of the physicians you need for your cancer care, including specialists from Cleveland Clinic’s Taussig Cancer Institute and OB/GYN & Women’s Health Institute.
Originally posted on Cleveland Clinic