Use of ethanol in the trans-arterial lipiodol embolization (TAELE) of intermediated-stage HCC: Is this safer than conventional trans-arterial chemo-embolization (c-TACE)?

Francesco Somma, Roberto D'Angelo, Nicola Serra, Gianluca Gatta, Roberto Grassi, Francesco Fiore

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Purpose To evaluate safety and efficacy of Trans-Arterial Ethanol-Lipiodol Embolization (TAELE) compared with conventional Trans-Arterial Chemo-Embolization (cTACE) in the treatment of small intermediate-HCC (BCLC-Stage B). Materials and Methods A random sample of 87 patients (37.93% male; 62.07% female; age range, 36'86 years) with documented small intermediate-HCC and treated with TAELE (mixture 1:1 of Ethanol and Lipiodol) or cTACE (mixture of 50mg-Epirubicin and 5cc-Lipiodol) were retrospectively studied in an institutional review board approved protocol. The two procedures were compared with X2-test, X2-test with Yates correction, McNemar's exact test, ANOVA test and log-rank test. Results TAELE and cTACE therapies were performed in 45 and 42 patients, respectively. Thirty days after the procedure, a Multi-Detector Computed Tomography (MDCT) showed no significant difference in the number of patients with partial and complete response between the two groups (p-value = 0.958), according to mRECIST. Contrary, significant differences were found in tumor-devascularization, lesion-reduction and post-embolization syndrome occurrence (p-value = 0.0004, p-value = 0.0003 and p-value = 0.009, respectively). Similar survival was observed during 36-month follow-up (p-value = 0.884). Conclusion Compared to cTACE, TAELE showed a better toxicity profile with similar 36-month survival and similar one-month anti-tumor effects, which makes it better tolerated by patients, especially in case of more than one treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0129573
JournalPLoS One
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 25 2015


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Medicine(all)

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