Safety Profile and Efficacy of Chemoembolization with Doxorubicin - Loaded Polyethylene Glycol Microspheres in Patients with Hepatocellular Carcinoma

  • Aleksandar Gjoreski Department for Diagnostic and Interventional Radiology, General City Hospital 8th September, Skopje, Republic of Macedonia
  • Rozalinda Popova-Jovanovska University Clinic for Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Faculty of Medicine, Ss Cyril and Methodius University of Skopje, Skopje, Republic of Macedonia
  • Irena Eftimovska-Rogac Department for Gastroenterology and Hepatology, General City Hospital 8th September, Skopje, Republic of Macedonia
  • Jusuf Vejseli Department for Gastroenterology and Hepatology, General City Hospital 8th September, Skopje, Republic of Macedonia
Keywords: Chemoembolization, Doxorubicin, Hepatocellular carcinoma, Microspheres


AIM: This study was designed as a preliminary investigation of safety and efficacy of LifePearl, polyethylene glycol microspheres loaded with doxorubicin for treatment of locally untreatable (i.e., unresectable and not suitable for local thermal ablation) hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC).

MATERIAL AND METHODS: Patients with locally untreatable HCC (mono- or bilobar disease, ECOG performance status 0-1, Chilg-Pugh score < 11) were analysed for this single arm Unicenter retrospective study. All the information were acquired through our local hospital information system. DEB-TACE was performed with 100-200 microns LifePearl loaded with 75-150 mg of doxorubicin depending on tumour size. One interventional radiologist with experience of more than 350 TACE procedures and one fellow in radiology performed all embolisations.

RESULTS: Twenty subjects with 29 tumours were treated (mean age 66.2 years). Child-Pugh status was A for 12 pts. (60%), B for 6 pts. (30%) and C for 2 pts. (10%). Three patients had insignificant ascites. Most patients (70%) underwent < 3 DEB-TACE procedures. Average doxorubicin dose was 71.1 mg per procedure. One patient had procedure-related SAE (acute pancreatitis) within the postembolization period which was induced due to non-target embolisation of the superior pancreaticoduodenal artery. Six-month freedom from procedure-related SAE or death was 95% (one necrotizing pancreatitis). Tumor response or stable disease was achieved in 95% (19/20) of subjects. Freedom from tumor progression or death at 6 months was 95%. One-year survival rate was 90% overall.

CONCLUSION: The results from this investigation suggest that LifePearl microspheres, Terumo loaded with doxorubicin can provide an excellent local tumour control with very few side effects in a relatively homogeneous group of patients with locally untreatable HCC.


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How to Cite
Gjoreski A, Popova-Jovanovska R, Eftimovska-Rogac I, Vejseli J. Safety Profile and Efficacy of Chemoembolization with Doxorubicin - Loaded Polyethylene Glycol Microspheres in Patients with Hepatocellular Carcinoma. Open Access Maced J Med Sci [Internet]. 2019Mar.11 [cited 2021Feb.28];7(5):742-6. Available from:
B - Clinical Sciences