HIPEC (hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy) for mesothelioma

You may be given chemotherapy into the tummy during surgery. This is called HIPEC (hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy).

What is HIPEC?

If you are having surgery for peritoneal mesothelioma, your doctor may suggest having chemotherapy into the tummy (abdomen) during the surgery. This is called HIPEC (hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy).

This treatment is usually only suitable for a small number of people. This is because you need to be well enough for the surgery.

Having HIPEC

During the operation, the surgeon removes all or most of the tumours. They wash out the area to remove any loose mesothelioma cells, and then put chemotherapy into the tummy. The chemotherapy drug used is usually cisplatin. Sometimes other chemotherapy drugs may be used if you are taking part in a clinical trial.

The chemotherapy is gently heated before being put in your tummy. This can help it work better for this type of cancer. The chemotherapy is left in place for around 60 to 90 minutes to give it time to work. It is then washed out.

Side effects of HIPEC

The side effects of giving chemotherapy this way can be different to chemotherapy into a vein. Your doctor or nurse will explain what to expect.