Innovative Liver Cancer Treatment Now Offered at AHN Wexford Hospital

Minimally invasive radiation therapy among full suite of advanced cancer care services offered close to home for patients living north of Pittsburgh

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As part of the ongoing expansion of highly advanced, cutting-edge health care services offered to residents of Pittsburgh’s northern communities at AHN’s newest full-service hospital, a new treatment is now available at AHN Wexford for those managing a diagnosis of liver cancer. 

Liver cancer incidence is almost three times higher in men than in women according to the American Cancer Society. Though less common in the U.S. than it is globally, liver cancer is among the deadliest forms of cancer worldwide. Given a lack of signs and symptoms at onset, it is often not detected until its later stages. Once detected, tumors in the liver are often too large or invasive for surgical removal, and chemotherapy is frequently unsuccessful in the treatment of late-stage liver cancer. 

Yttrium-90 (Y90) radioembolization is a minimally invasive treatment that combines embolization and high dose radiation therapy to target inoperable tumors in the liver. During the treatment, the radioactive isotope yttrium-90 is delivered via catheters directly to tumors without affecting healthy parts of the body. It is intended to slow the growth of tumors and increase the chances for future curative surgery. 

AHN Wexford joins the Academic Cancer Institute at the network’s flagship Allegheny General Hospital in offering the treatment to patients. Andrew Klobuka, MD, lead radiologist at the AHN Liver Cancer Center of Excellence, recently performed the first Y90 procedure at AHN Wexford.

“Not only can Y90 radioembolization extend and significantly improve quality of life for patients with liver cancer, but it represents a potential lifeline if curative surgery is made possible,” said Dr. Klobuka. “We are extremely pleased to offer patients in the region with close-to-home access to this highly advanced liver cancer therapy.” 

The AHN Cancer Institute at the Wexford Health + Wellness Pavilion, located on the Wexford Hospital campus, offers comprehensive cancer care including the latest technologies and treatments to diagnose and treat many types of cancer.  

AHN Wexford Hospital opened its doors to patients last fall. The full-service hospital includes a 24-bed emergency department with pediatric-capable rooms and dedicated pediatric hospitalists; state-of-the-art operating rooms with minimally invasive robotic surgery capabilities; a cardiac catheterization lab and hybrid OR for advanced surgical procedures; a short-stay observation unit; an adult intensive care unit; advanced diagnostic imaging; and more.

If you or a loved one is affected by liver cancer and would like to inquire about Y90 therapy, call (412) 442-2459. To schedule a cancer-related appointment at AHN or talk with a nurse about cancer diagnoses, treatments and side effects, call the AHN Cancer Help Line at (412) NURSE-4-U / (412) 687-7348.

About the Allegheny Health Network

Allegheny Health Network (AHN.org) is an integrated healthcare delivery system serving the greater Western Pennsylvania region.  The Network is composed of 14 hospitals, ambulatory surgery centers, Health + Wellness Pavilions, an employed physician organization, home and community-based health services, a research institute, and a group purchasing organization. The Network provides patients with access to a complete spectrum of advanced medical services, including nationally recognized programs for primary and emergency care, trauma care, cardiovascular disease, organ transplantation, cancer care, orthopedic surgery, neurology and neurosurgery, women’s health, diabetes, autoimmune disease and more.  AHN employs approximately 21,000 people, has more than 2,500 physicians on its medical staff and serves as a clinical campus for Drexel University College of Medicine and the Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine.