Liver Cancer Treatment Options

People with liver cancer have access to state-of-the-art, evidence-based treatment at UPMC Hillman Cancer Center.

Our oncologists and other cancer experts combine their skills and experience to provide complete and coordinated care.

We'll work with you and your doctor to design the optimal treatment plan to offer you the highest quality of life.

Your liver cancer treatment may include surgery, chemotherapy, or radiation — or any combination of the three.

We also provide immunotherapy, which uses your body's natural defenses to kill cancer cells. And you have access to the latest liver cancer therapies through clinical trials.

Your care team will explain all your liver cancer treatment options and make sure we take the best approach possible.

Surgery for Liver Cancer

Surgery to remove the tumor from the liver is often the first step in treating liver cancer. Surgeons will often remove other nearby cancerous tissue as well.

Our experts developed a less-invasive laparoscopic approach to liver surgery, which can reduce pain and shorten your recovery time. Our surgeons have performed more than 250 laparoscopic liver surgeries, making them among the most experienced in the country.

If you meet certain criteria, a liver transplant may be an option to treat your liver cancer. Your cancer care team will be able to guide you through the transplant process.

Medical Oncology for Liver Cancer

Medical oncology includes chemotherapy — the use of a chemical agent to kill cancerous cells.

We offer various types of chemo. We'll select the best approach based on your condition.

We're also equipped to provide regional perfusion therapy. This treatment delivers the medicine directly to your liver tumor.

It can reduce the hair loss and nausea associated with traditional chemo.

Learn more about the David C. Koch Regional Perfusion Cancer Therapy Center.

Radiation Therapy for Liver Cancer

Your treatment may include the use of radiation to reduce the size of your liver tumor or prevent cancer cells from multiplying.

UPMC Hillman Cancer Center offers many advanced radiation methods that may be right for your specific case.

Stereotactic radiosurgery uses precise imaging to map out the treatment area. It focuses powerful beams of radiation on tumors, passing harmlessly through healthy tissues but killing cancer cells.

This allows your treatment team to reach areas inaccessible by surgery.

In most cases, you can complete stereotactic radiosurgery treatment in just a few sessions.

Liver Cancer Treatment at UPMC: Treating the Whole Person

At UPMC Hillman Cancer Center, we believe that the best liver cancer treatment begins with a focus on you.

We offer a range of supportive care services that can help you feel more at ease and make your treatments more effective.

These services can help you and your loved ones manage cancer treatment and recovery:

  • Behavioral medicine — psychologists and psychiatrists can help you create a plan for meeting the challenges of liver cancer.
  • Nutrition for liver cancer — our nutrition experts can craft a diet plan to help you regain strength and support your health.
  • Liver cancer pain management — pain experts will work with your care team to relieve pain from liver cancer treatment.
  • Palliative care — this service aims to improve the quality of life for people whose liver cancer no longer responds to curative treatments.
  • Social support — social workers can help you manage the practical aspects of living with liver cancer.
  • Interpreter services — interpreters help international patients and others with language barriers discern the cancer treatment process.

Contact Us About Liver Cancer Care

To learn more about Liver Cancer or to make an appointment, you can: