Liver Center | Departments & Services

Interventional Radiology Procedures:

Thermal ablation – Imaging guided techniques to kill tumors where they live with extremes in temperature.

Cryoablation – targeted freezing of tumors using thin probes and CT scan and ultrasound guidance. This is an outpatient procedure requiring only mild sedation.

Microwave ablation – targeted heating of tumors to lethal temperatures using precisely placed microwave probes. This is also an outpatient procedure.

Transarterial Chemoembolization (TACE) – A thin tube is threaded into the artery feeding the tumor in the liver and tiny beads containing a powerful anticancer drug are injected. They block tumor blood flow and expose the tumor to a high dose of drug.

Radioembolization – The same approach as with chemoembolization, but tiny resin spheres (SirSpheres) containing radioactive yttrium are injected instead of the drug-containing beads. The radiation dose is very high to the tumor with almost nothing getting to surrounding normal liver.

Systemic Chemotherapy

Sorafenib (Nexavar) is a pill used to treat advanced liver cancer when other treatments are not indicated or in combination with other treatments. There are many other new treatments on the way.

Radiation Therapy

External radiation therapy is sometimes used to kill cancer cells and shrink the tumor. Radiation can be used in combination with other treatments and can help prolong survival.

Liver Transplantation

For those who meet liver transplant criteria, this is an excellent option. It treats the cancer, decreases any risk of cancer recurrence by removing the liver and also treats underlying liver disease. A candidate for transplantation can be evaluated and transplanted at Hartford Hospital through the Comprehensive Liver Center.


The tumor and nearby tissue (and possibly lymph nodes) are removed.

Clinical Trials

New types of treatments are being investigated in clinical trials. We can help you access both national and local clinical research trial opportunities.

Supporting Care and Navigation Services

The Palliative Care Team is available for consultations and supportive care to help improve quality of life. All patients are also provided with the services of an Oncology Certified Nurse Navigator (OCNN). The OCNN will help to coordinate care, provide emotional support and education and make referrals to supportive services as needed. Services may include social work, nutritional consultations, financial counseling, home care services and integrative therapies. The OCNN may be reached at 860.972.4184.

Comprehensive Liver Center at Hartford Hospital