Northwestern University adopts radioembolization with TheraSphere as first-line treatment for HCC

Therasphere action

BTG has announced that following positive results of its 15-year experience between 2003 and 2017 with TheraSphere, Northwestern University, Illinois, USA, has adopted Y-90 transarterial radioembolization (TARE; also known as radioembolization, or selective internal radiation therapy [SIRT]) with TheraSphere as the primary transarterial locoregional therapy for patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) limited to the liver.

Northwestern University’s decision to adopt radioembolization with TheraSphere as a first-line therapy or patients with HCC was informed by data prospectively collected and incrementally reported, demonstrating outcomes as expected by the BCLC algorithm for stages A-D, applied as either neoadjuvant or definitive treatment. Compared with TACE, the data confirm that outpatient radioembolization allows for fewer treatments, better quality of life, longer time to progression and versatile application as neoadjuvant locoregional therapy combined with either resection or orthotopic liver transplantation.

Physician comment

“Patients are looking for treatments that are safe, efficacious, have minimal detrimental effects on their quality of life and as pain free as possible,” said Riad Salem, chief, section of Vascular and Interventional Radiology, Department of Radiology at Northwestern University and lead author of the paper “Institutional decision to adopt Y-90 as primary treatment for HCC informed by a 1,000-patient 15-year experience” recently accepted for publication in the journal Hepatology. “The benefit of Y-90 TARE with TheraSphere is that it meets all of these patient needs, and also enables patients to be treated as outpatients, permitting discharge on the same day, reducing the need for lengthy hospitalisations and minimising impact on daily life. We recognise the many approaches to establishing a new standard of care. In our case, we are proud of the controlled, prospective studies we completed over the last decade, each addressing a specific question, and each getting us closer to the unanimous, multidisciplinary adoption of Y-90 as first-line. We are hopeful that when colleagues and peers review the study, the long-term survival outcomes, our rationale and the strength of the evidence, many will follow suit.”


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