Do you have a cancer that is localized to an area of your body that chemotherapy just isn't working on? And, the surgeons tell you that there is no way to get rid of it? Take heart, there is a new therapy that was pioneered in the United States by
Dr. Douglas Coldwell.
This radically new therapy, radioembolization, takes advantage of your body's anatomy to deliver a huge dose of radiation to the tumor and minimal amounts to those areas not involved. The radioactive particles are about the size of talcum powder particles and are delivered to the tumor via a small tube that is inserted in your groin. This small tube is then threaded to your liver or wherever the tumor is located and the particles delivered. The radiation is in the form of beta particles which travel only about 4mm in the tissues delivering their energy to the tumor in that short distance and do not cause any significant radiation outside the patient. The isotope, yttrium-90, is used for this because it produces only beta particles (electrons) and no other types of radiation. Tumors routinely become resistant to chemotherapy but not to these lethal doses of radiation.
The results have been unambiguous. We have seen a significant prolongation of life in those patients who have inoperable tumors that have spread to their liver from other sites such as the colon, lung, breast, etc. Additionally, tumors that arise in the liver (hepatoma/hepatocellular carcinoma or cholangiocarcinoma) also respond very well. The side effects are minimal with about a week of lethargy and a possibiity of an ulcer if one of the beads goes to an artery to the stomach or duodenum. Liver toxicity is low and most patients return to their daily lives in an improved condition 7-10 days after treatment. This can also be performed in areas in which the blood supply to the tumor can be isolated from the normal tissue, for instance in bone tumors or in kidney tumors.
Another advantage to this therapy is that all the pretreatment work up as well as the therapy itself is done on an outpatient basis so that you do not spend days in the hospital or commuting for endless weeks to get the therapy.
There are very few centers in the United States, or in fact, the world that are experts in this therapy. The University of Louisville is lucky enough to have on the staff, Dr. Coldwell, one of the world's foremost experts on this therapy.
This center is situated in a beautiful yet accessible area with easy access to the Louisville international airport. This location provides both personal and professional care in a relaxed and caring environment.
Don't hesitate to call Dr. Coldwell for an evaluation of your case and he will make recommendations as to the care that he can offer. Patients, their families or physicians are welcome to contact.