Hot Chemotherapy Bath: Patients See Hope, Critics Hold Doubts


August 12, 2011

The New York Times

SAN DIEGO — This is cancer therapy at its most aggressive, a treatment patients liken to being filleted, disemboweled and then bathed in hot poison.

The therapy, which couples extensive abdominal surgery with blasts of heated chemotherapy to the abdominal cavity and its organs, was once a niche procedure used mainly against rare cancers of the appendix. Most academic medical centers shunned it.

More recently, as competition for patients and treatments intensifies, an increasing number of the nation’s leading medical centers has been offering the costly — and controversial — therapy to patients with the more common colorectal or ovarian cancers. And some hospitals are even publicizing the treatment as a hot “chemo bath.” Read More