Published online Mar 28, 2014. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v20.i12.3069
Revised: December 23, 2013
Accepted: January 8, 2014
Published online: March 28, 2014
Transarterial chemoembolization (TACE) is the first line treatment for patients with intermediate stage hepatocellular carcinoma but is also increasingly being used for patients on the transplant waiting list to prevent further tumor growth. Despite its widespread use, TACE remains an unstandardized procedure, with variation in type and size of embolizing particles, type and dose of chemotherapy and interval between therapies. Existing evidence from randomized controlled trials suggest that bland transarterial embolization (TAE) has the same efficacy with TACE. In the current article, we review the use of TACE and TAE for hepatocellular carcinoma and we focus on the evidence for their use.
Core tip: In the current article, we review the use of transarterial chemoembolization (TACE) and transarterial embolization (TAE) for hepatocellular carcinoma and we focus on the evidence for their use. Apart from their use in intermediate stage hepatocellular carcinoma, we also review the evidence for their use as neo-adjuvant treatment in the pre-transplant setting. We also highlight the fact that there is no conclusive evidence for superiority of TACE over TAE.