Cancer can spread through the body through different routes. In some patients with cancer, the tumor spreads throughout the abdominal cavity, also called the peritoneal cavity. This condition is known as carcinomatosis. Cancers which are often associated with carcinomatosis include colorectal cancer, ovarian cancer, gastric cancer, appendiceal tumors and peritoneal mesothelioma.
In patients with carcinomatosis, intravenous chemotherapy alone may not be the most effective treatment. In carefully selected individuals, a combination of chemotherapy as well as surgery (cytoreductive surgery) with heated intraperitoneal chemotherapy, also known as HIPEC, may offer a better outcome. I am on faculty at Mount Sinai New York, one of the largest peritoneal treatment centers in the nation.
Surgical treatments for the peritoneal malignancies are carefully tailored to meet each patient's individual case.
- Cytoreductive surgery (CRS) and heated intraperitoneal chemotherapy (HIPEC): Our surgical oncologist performs the surgical procedures necessary for removing all the tumor from the abdomen. This may include a bowel resection, splenectomy, and/or removal of the peritoneal lining. Once the tumor sites have been excised, heated chemotherapy is infused in order to target any remaining cancer nodules during the same surgery.
- Laparoscopic HIPEC: In certain cases, we are able to offer laparoscopic HIPEC, which allows patients all the benefits of minimally invasive surgery.