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Therasphere treatment for inoperable primary liver cancer

Posts: 12
Joined: May 2002

Hi all,

My Mother had primary liver cancer and tried therasphere treatment at the Univ. of Md hospital in Baltimore. Mom was in a very advanced stage when she tried the treatment and she passed away about 7 months after the treatment. Mom's tumors did shrink somewhat as a result of the treatment. Mom tried Therasphere after already having had surgery, 2 chemoembolizations, and 1 year of chemotherapy. I'm sending you some info on Therasphere (below) from a press release in case it might be helpful to some of you. My best wishes and thoughts are with all of you out there who have been diagnosed with liver cancer --


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2001 Releases - University of Maryland Medical News

Originally Released: May 15, 2001
Contact: Gwen Fariss Newman, gnewman@umm.edu, 410-328-8919
Ellen Beth Levitt, eblevitt@umm.edu, 410-328-8919

37th annual meeting of American Society of Clinical Oncologists, May 12-15, San Francisco

Cancer specialists from the University of Maryland Greenebaum Cancer Center report that early results of a new treatment for inoperable liver cancer, known as TheraSphere, are promising. They will report their findings at the 37th annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncologists on May 15. The Greenebaum Cancer Center in Baltimore is the first in the nation to successfully perform the procedure.

Forty-five patients have undergone the procedure there since its introduction last fall, according to David Van Echo, M.D., professor of medicine at the University of Maryland School of Medicine and director of the New Drug Development Program at the Greenebaum Cancer Center.

Posts: 4
Joined: Jan 2004

Thank you, Belle, for your information.

I am a retried environmental safety and health engineer and my wife is a retired RN. We have been reseaching this technology for several months now for my wife who has metastatic colorectal cancer of the liver. We chose to go with John's Hopkins, Dr. J. Geschwind, after visiting with Dr. Dignazio @ Christiana Hospital in Newark DE., which uses a different product, called SIR-Spheres which has been used since 1997 in Australia. We chose Hopkins, because we felt that the approach was more efficacious and promised a greater survivability rate. The basic differences were:

1) that SIR-Spheres were infused into both lobes of the liver simultaneously, whereas the Theraspheres were infused into each lobe at different times, with the most affected lobe being infused first.

2- The TheraSphere process uses less spheres with greater radiation activity. This provides the advantages of ensuring that oxygen needed to destroy the hypoxic DNA of the cancer cells is more readily supplied, and there is less chance of embolization, which could prevent future treatments, should they be required.

We will let you know how we did after the procedure.

We found the following websites of great assistance in understanding these processes:





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MaureenD803's picture
Posts: 1
Joined: Sep 2017

I had the Therasphere treatment done 4 weeks ago.  Prior to that, I had a liver biopsy (where they inadvertently punctured my lung), a "mapping" procedure, and then the actual therasphere treatment.  As background, I have breast cancer that metastisized to my lungs and liver.  Anti-hormone treatments stopped working.  I had a horrible reaction - nausea and severe pain on my right side, headaches, light sensitivity and anxiety.  The light sensitivity is finally starting to subside.  The pain has lessened - comes and goes.  Same with the nausea.  They want to do the other side in several weeks.  I don't know that I can go through this again.

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