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November 1, 1965

Chemotherapy for Liver Cancer by Protracted Ambulatory Infusion

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Cancer Research, Lahey Clinic Foundation, Boston.

JAMA. 1965;194(5):481-486. doi:10.1001/jama.1965.03090180005001

A method of treatment for cancer of the liver (primary and secondary) and the biliary tract, which consists of the protracted infusion of anticancer drugs through a plastic catheter inserted directly into the hepatic artery, was investigated. Long-term infusion was conducted for periods of weeks to months. A portable infusion apparatus was developed to permit ambulatory outpatient infusion treatment, rendering long-term infusion more practical. Eighty-one patients with neoplasms of the liver were accepted for treatment and 73 patients achieved an adequate trial of therapy. Objective response was noted in 43 patients. Survival was prolonged in patients with advanced metastatic liver cancer from primary tumors of the colorectum. Average survival was increased from the expected survival of 2.1 months to 9.4 months in this latter group. It was concluded that protracted hepatic artery infusion is of significant practical value in the management of patients with cancer of the liver.