Published online Sep 15, 2003. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v9.i9.1885
Revised: March 23, 2003
Accepted: April 11, 2003
Published online: September 15, 2003
Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is one of the most common malignancies in the world, responsible for an estimated one million deaths annually. It has a poor prognosis due to its rapid infiltrating growth and complicating liver cirrhosis. Surgical resection, liver transplantation and cryosurgery are considered the best curative options, achieving a high rate of complete response, especially in patients with small HCC and good residual liver function. In nonsurgery, regional interventional therapies have led to a major breakthrough in the management of unresectable HCC, which include transarterial chemoembolization (TACE), percutaneous ethanol injection (PEI), radiofrequency ablation (RFA), microwave coagulation therapy (MCT), laser-induced thermotherapy (LITT), etc. As a result of the technical development of locoregional approaches for HCC during the recent decades, the range of combined interventional therapies has been continuously extended. Most combined multimodal interventional therapies reveal their enormous advantages as compared with any single therapeutic regimen alone, and play more important roles in treating unresectable HCC.