Malignancies confined to the liver are one of the most common forms of cancer. There are two basic types of the disease: primary liver cancer originates in the tissues of the liver itself, while metastatic liver cancer occurs when cancer cells spread from other parts of the body, most commonly from the stomach, pancreas, breast or lung. Ultimately, about a third of all cancers will spread to the liver.

Surgery usually provides the best chance for a cure, and our surgical specialists are among the best in the country. In some cases, however, tumors develop internally within the liver and complete surgical removal is not possible.

The University of Maryland Marlene and Stewart Greenebaum Comprehensive Cancer Center (UMGCCC) offers a comprehensive Liver-Directed Therapies Program, providing the most advanced treatments available -- from complete or partial surgical removal to systemic, combination therapies to regional, targeted treatment options -- to provide the very best outcomes possible for patients with all forms of liver cancer.

Our multidisciplinary Liver-Directed Therapies Program team consists of experts in medical oncology, radiation oncology, surgical oncology, interventional radiology, nuclear medicine, gastroenterology, hepatology and pathology. These specialists meet and consult weekly to develop the best plan of treatment for each individual patient.

Liver Cancer Treatments

Experts within the University of Maryland Liver Center consider all possible options to help patients determine a treatment plan for liver cancer. The multidisciplinary team of physicians examine each patient's case at a weekly meeting and discuss treatment options, which can include surgery, chemotherapy or radiation.

The University of Maryland has been recognized for its treatment of liver cancer, including:

  • Selective Internal Radiation Therapy (SIRT) - the University of Maryland is the first and one of the most experienced radioembolization centers in the country
  • Intrabiliary brachytherapy - as a component of pre-liver transplant treatment of bile duct cancers that requires tremendous expertise
  • Complex cancer genetic testing for patients who require advanced therapy
  • Robot-assisted liver surgery allows for high rates of success in high-risk patients
  • Hyperthermic Intraperitoneal Chemotherapy (HIPEC)
  • Radionuclide therapy - a type of brachytherapy taken either by mouth or injection which uses radioactive medicine to target and destroy cancer cells for certain types of liver cancer.