Leading-Edge Ovarian Cancer Care Another First for University Hospitals

A team of cancer specialists at the University Hospitals Seidman Cancer Center at University Hospitals Case Medical Center is among the first in the nation to launch a dedicated gynecologic program using Hyperthermic Intraperitoneal Chemotherapy (HIPEC) to treat ovarian, endometrial and certain other malignancies. The team is being led by Robert DeBernardo, MD, a gynecologic oncologist at UH Seidman Cancer Center and University Hospitals MacDonald Women’s Hospital.

HIPEC is an exciting new approach to treating advanced and recurrent abdominal and gynecological cancers. In cases where the tumor is completely removed, HIPEC circulates chemotherapy — heated to 42 degrees to 44 degrees centigrade — throughout the abdominal cavity, where it can penetrate diseased tissue and attack any remaining cancer cells. HIPEC also can be used as adjuvant therapy to potentially prevent recurrence in women that have completed traditional chemotherapy for ovarian cancer.

“HIPEC is the next step in treating gynecologic cancers, including recurrent and new ovarian and certain high-risk endometrial cancers,” Dr. DeBernardo says.

The team plans to launch several Phase One clinical trials this year. The studies will look at morbidity, feasibility, patient tolerance to treatment and outcomes.

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