Chemo Embolisation or TACE (Transcatheter Arterial Chemoembolization) is a minimally invasive treatment performed in interventional radiology to tumours’ blood supply and deliver anti-cancer drugs.
There are two components to the procedure:
Chemotherapy is a procedure where anti-cancer drugs are delivered to a tumour by directly injecting it into a blood vessel. In addition to the chemo an embolic agent is placed inside the blood vessels trapping the chemo in the tumour.
When Is This Procedure Conducted?
Chemo Embolisation is predominantly used in the treatment of:
- Hepatoma or Hepatocellular Carcinoma (primary liver cancer)
- Metastasis (spread) to the liver from:
- Colon cancer
- Carcinoid tumours and other neuroendocrine tumours
How Does This Procedure Work?
You should not eat anything before the procedure, and you may be given a sedative for the procedure. The interventional radiologist will guide a catheter (much like a thin tube of spaghetti ) as close as possible to the tumour and release the embolic particles. The particles are usually microspheres that are less than 0.5 mm in size and these will be loaded with chemotherapy.
How Will I Feel After The Procedure?
You may experience some pain and nausea after the procedure, so you will be offered strong painkillers and medication to prevent nausea. An overnight stay in hospital in typical.
- Summary of Benefits of Chemo Embolisation/TACE is a safe minimally invasive procedure
- Can be used in the treatment of liver cancers and a wide range of cancers
- Complimentary to other treatments like radiation, chemotherapy and tumour ablation.
Depending on your specific circumstances, the Unitingcare Medical Imaging team will be able to advise you of the optimal treatment, recovery times and any specifics you might need to know should you require Chemo Embolisation.