At Miami Cancer Institute, we specialize in advanced cancer therapies, including the latest surgery and chemotherapy treatments. By combining these treatments with our vast experience and compassionate care, we strive to improve the number of successful treatments and the lives of our patients.
Hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy (HIPEC) is a treatment that combines surgery and chemotherapy. During the treatment, which takes place during surgery to remove tumors, the abdomen is filled with heated chemotherapy drugs to kill any leftover cancer cells.
Miami Cancer Institute offers HIPEC as a treatment option for some patients. Thanks to years of research, our team has documented some of the most robust evidence of positive results in the region.
Who benefits from HIPEC?
HIPEC is most often used to treat ovarian cancer. It may also be used to treat:
HIPEC is best used when there are no tumors left in the abdomen. Your care team will only use HIPEC if they are able to remove all visible tumors during your surgery (cytoreduction)
When you come to Miami Cancer Institute for HIPEC treatment, you will receive care from cancer specialists who have years of experience treating patients with HIPEC therapy. Our team has been providing HIPEC treatment longer than any other institution in the region.
We also incorporate a collaborative team approach to ensure the best possible outcomes for patients. This approach involves reviewing and discussing each patient’s cancer thoroughly to determine whether HIPEC is the best treatment option.
Many of our surgeons are also highly skilled in robotic surgery with HIPEC, and we are one of only a few centers in the country to offer this combination. Robotic surgery can help reduce hospital stays, cause less pain and speed up recovery. With fewer side effects and a quicker recovery, patients are able to undergo additional chemotherapy treatment faster, which can result in better outcomes.
HIPEC is done at the time of surgery to remove tumors from the abdomen. The treatment is only effective if the abdomen is free of tumors, so doctors decide during surgery whether a patient will receive the HIPEC treatment.
During HIPEC, doctors insert catheters – thin, flexible tubes – into the abdomen and pump chemotherapy drugs through the catheters, giving the abdomen a chemotherapy “bath.” The chemotherapy drugs are heated to a little over 100°F. This technique, also called “hot chemotherapy,” has been shown to be more effective in killing cancer cells.
Many cancer treatments require patients to wait four to six weeks after surgery to start chemotherapy treatment. With HIPEC, the chemotherapy drugs can start killing cancer cells sooner, which has been shown to lead to better outcomes.
HIPEC can also deliver a high dose of heated chemotherapy directly to tissue where cancer typically grows or spreads. The treatment doesn’t have to fight through existing tumors to penetrate the tissue, and the heated drugs are more likely to kill the cancerous cells.
Unlike typical chemotherapy treatment that passes through the liver or kidneys to reach the abdomen, HIPEC avoids exposing other organs to harmful side effects.
Because HIPEC is given during surgery, when consent isn’t possible, your doctor or care team will discuss with you whether you’re a good candidate for the treatment and get your consent for treatment prior to your surgery. You will not need to prepare any differently for the surgery.
In many cases, your doctor can use imaging tests before surgery to determine whether they will be able to remove all of the tumors and use HIPEC. However, it is not always possible to know if the surgeon will be able to remove all the tumors and proceed with the treatment.
HIPEC should not affect your recovery from surgery. However, you may experience some normal chemotherapy side effects after the treatment, including nausea and fatigue.
Depending on your diagnosis, you may need to undergo additional chemotherapy treatments after HIPEC. These treatments usually start four to six weeks after surgery.
Who are the experts on HIPEC?
Miami Cancer Institute, part of Baptist Health South Florida, is pleased to share that our Blood & Marrow Stem Cell Transplant Program is fully FACT Accredited for stem cell transplants and cellular therapies. This accreditation provides our program national recognition of a certified program to perform stem cell transplants and cellular therapies such as CAR T-cell therapies within our Institute. Additionally, this recognition allows our team to obtain full insurance coverage for these procedures from all providers. For more information on FACT Accreditation, feel free to visit the following link.