Peritoneal malignancy refers to cancers that begin to grow in the abdomen. Because such a small space cradles so many internal organs, cancer can easily spread from one organ to the next. This is especially true for women with ovarian, endometrial, cervical or fallopian tube cancers.

Patients with peritoneal malignancies used to have poor outcomes, but now because of advanced treatment options, many go on to live active, healthy lives following treatment.

Peritoneal Malignancy Treatment

The surgical oncology team at Wake Forest Baptist’s Comprehensive Cancer Center is nationally recognized for the treatment of tumors that have spread through the peritoneal cavity.

We perform a two-phase treatment for peritoneal surface disease. It includes:

  • Cytoreductive surgery, also called debulking, partially removes tumors that cannot be fully excised. This is done in order to prepare the patient for chemotherapy or radiation. (Partial removal of tumors is not considered an effective treatment on its own.)
  • HIPEC is a perfusion technique and only performed in combination with cytoreductive surgery. After the surgeons remove as much as of the tumors as they can, while the abdomen is open, doctors perfuse the peritoneal cavity with a sterile, heated chemotherapy solution to kill any remaining cancerous cells.