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Dr. Ioannou on Treatment Options in Hepatocellular Carcinoma

George N. Ioannou, MD
Published: Thursday, Jan 12, 2017



George N. Ioannou, MD, associate professor, VA Puget Sound Health Care System, University of Washington School of Medicine, discusses the best treatment options for patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC).

According to Ioannou, most patients with HCC receive some kind of locoregional therapy, such as chemoembolization and radiofrequency ablation. Then the physician can move on to treating the patient's hepatitis C.

When it comes to treating these patients with antiviral agents, the hope is that they will be successful, and that 2 things might happen: their underlying liver disease will not get any worse or might even get better with time, and that the resolution of the hepatitis C virus might reduce the chances of developing new liver cancers. Ioannou says future research is warranted in this area.

There are certain patients who should not be treated with antiviral agents, he says, as they are unlikely to see the same benefits. These include patients with very advanced liver cancer, untreatable liver cancer, or liver cancer that has been treated, but there is still residual disease. Most of the time, says Ioannou, oncologists consider antiviral treatment if the liver cancer has been successfully treated in the first place.



George N. Ioannou, MD, associate professor, VA Puget Sound Health Care System, University of Washington School of Medicine, discusses the best treatment options for patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC).

According to Ioannou, most patients with HCC receive some kind of locoregional therapy, such as chemoembolization and radiofrequency ablation. Then the physician can move on to treating the patient's hepatitis C.

When it comes to treating these patients with antiviral agents, the hope is that they will be successful, and that 2 things might happen: their underlying liver disease will not get any worse or might even get better with time, and that the resolution of the hepatitis C virus might reduce the chances of developing new liver cancers. Ioannou says future research is warranted in this area.

There are certain patients who should not be treated with antiviral agents, he says, as they are unlikely to see the same benefits. These include patients with very advanced liver cancer, untreatable liver cancer, or liver cancer that has been treated, but there is still residual disease. Most of the time, says Ioannou, oncologists consider antiviral treatment if the liver cancer has been successfully treated in the first place.


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