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March 1961

Hepatic Artery Catheterization for Liver Perfusion

Arch Surg. 1961;82(3):423-425. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1961.01300090093018

The increasing interest in perfusion and infusion techniques for the application of chemotherapeutic agents in the treatment of cancer has revived interest in the treatment of metastatic cancer of the liver. Previous studies indicate that metastatic deposits within the liver derive approximately 80% of their nutrition from the arterial supply. In the early part of the last decade, single doses of chemotherapeutic agents such as mechlorethamine (nitrogen mustard) were introduced directly into the hepatic artery. After a few experiences, it became obvious that the large doses of a toxic chemical could not be tolerated by the normal liver cells in a liver already impaired by metastatic disease. Laparotomy was necessary to instill the drug directly into the hepatic artery. The trauma of laparotomy and the concomitant anesthesia, plus the toxicity of the chemical, made liver coma a frequent sequela. In spite of this, with the singledose technique, an occasional case