Like normal body cells, cancerous cells are fed by blood vessels. Physician delivers cancer treatment through the catheter directly to the tumor. The physician may also use long, thin needles to deliver the treatment.
The following types of cancer therapies are administered using interventional techniques:
Transarterial chemoembolization (TACE): Embolization materials and chemical drugs are injected through a catheter that is placed directly into an artery that supplies a cancer tumor. TACE seems to be particularly effective in treating aggressive liver cancers.
Transarterial chemical infusion (TACI): Chemical drugs are directly infused into tumor to kill cancerous cells. This method is adaptable for the treatment of many different types of cancer.
Interventional therapy deposits chemotherapy drugs directly into the tumor, sparing healthy tissue. Therefore, a physician can safely use higher doses of these drugs. The benefits of this method include:
• Fewer anesthetics are required;
• Less trauma to the body;
• Typically less pain and few general side effects;
• Shorter hospital stay;
• Shorter recovery period
The side effects and complications of interventional therapy depend upon the reason for the procedure and location of interventional treatment. In general, interventional therapy is safe and commonly associated with only minor side effects, including:
• Low-grade fever
The most serious risk is that an interventional procedure may cause hemorrhage, or bleeding, and in very rare instances, death.