A Study on the Angioarchitecture of Hepatocellular Carcinoma

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    Chinese University of Hong Kong
Updated on 28 February 2022
liver cancer
measurable disease


Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is one of the commonest solid malignancies in Hong Kong as well as globally. Transarterial therapy has been playing an important role in the treatment algorithm for patients with HCC. The primary purpose of transarterial therapy is eradication of the viability of the targeted tumors. The treatment outcomes have been variable among the various treatments, in general, there is still much room for improvement, especially for large size tumors. From the studies on Transarterial chemoembolization (TACE), it is known that the treatment outcome is affected by the nature and the formulation of therapeutic agents that are delivered, which is related to the angioarchitecture of the tumor. Knowledge on the angioarchitecture of HCC is essential for the understanding of the requirements for effective transarterial treatment of HCC. This prospective study is aimed to study the angioarchitecture of HCC.


Embolization is performed within 2 weeks before the scheduled date of partial hepatectomy. The purpose of the timing is two folded, it allows observation of the embolization effect to be differentiated among the various embolic agents, it also allows time for the patient and the liver to recover from the embolization.

The patient then receives partial hepatectomy within 2 weeks unless the result of liver function tests shows contraindication to surgery, in which case the liver function test is further evaluated on a weekly basis until the findings are acceptable, and surgery is scheduled accordingly.

Condition Carcinoma, Hepatocellular
Treatment embolization
Clinical Study IdentifierNCT03808766
SponsorChinese University of Hong Kong
Last Modified on28 February 2022


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Inclusion Criteria

Age above 18 years
HCC suitable for partial hepatectomy
Child-Pugh A or B cirrhosis
Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group performance score 0 or 1
Barcelona clinic liver cancer (BCLC) staging A or B
HCC diagnosed by typical enhancement patterns on cross sectional imaging or histology
Massive expansive tumor morphology with measurable lesion on CT (characterized by well-defined spherical or globular configuration, with or without tumor capsule or satellite lesions)

Exclusion Criteria

Previous treatment with liver resection, ablation, chemotherapy, radiotherapy or transarterial embolization (with or without chemotherapy)
Evidence of tumor invasion of portal vein or hepatic vein
History of acute tumor rupture presenting with hemo-peritoneum
Infiltrative tumor morphology (characterized by ill- defined tumor margin and amorphous configuration) or diffuse tumor morphology (characterized by large number of small nodules)
Serum creatinine level > 150umol/L
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