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Hepatic Radioembolization

Hepatic Radioembolization is a minimally invasive procedure that eliminates tumors in the liver through targeted radiation with yttrium 90. A tiny catheter is inserted into an artery in the groin and is guided to the arteries supplying the tumors in the liver. Next, small beads carrying the yttrium 90 are delivered to the tumor via the catheter. The yttrium 90 beads lodge in the tumor and kill it. This approach minimizes radiation exposure to healthy liver tissues and other organs. This is typically an outpatient procedure and has very few side effects.

Preparation for Hepatic Radioembolization

  • All patients are seen in consultation with an interventional radiologist, during which you will discuss your medical history, the procedure, recovery and follow up routines.
  • You may be required to get a CT scan or an MRI and some lab work if not already completed prior to your consultation
  • Typically within 1 to 2 weeks of your consultation your hepatic radioembolization procedure will be scheduled.

What to Expect

  • During the procedure, you are conscious, but sedated through an IV in the arm.
  • A small catheter is inserted into an artery usually in the groin and is guided to the arteries supplying the liver.
  • Dye is injected into the arteries and X-rays are taken. A road map of the blood supply to the liver and tumors is created and is used to guide the delivery of the yttrium 90 beads to the tumors.
  • The yttrium 90 beads will produce radiation within the cancerous cells to stop blood from flowing into the diseased cells.
  • At the completion of the procedure the catheter is removed and the access site at the artery is sealed closed.

What to Expect after Hepatic Radioembolization

  • After the procedure most patients are on bed rest for a few hours, and then discharged the same day.
  • The interventional radiology clinic will provide a follow up call 24 hours after the procedure to check in on your recovery.
  • A clinical follow up will be scheduled for 1-2 weeks after the procedure to go over your recovery and discuss any necessary follow up imaging and or lab tests.
  • All follow up imaging will be arranged in conjunction with your referring oncologist and they will be informed of your treatment progress in interventional radiology.

For More Information

For more information on hepatic radioembolization, or to schedule an appointment with an interventional radiologist, please call 847.570.2160.