Thalidomide for the treatment of metastatic hepatic epithelioid hemangioendothelioma: a case report with a long term follow-up

Ann Hepatol. 2011 Jan-Mar;10(1):99-102.


Hepatic epithelioid hemangioendothelioma (HEH) is an unusual, low-grade malignant vascular tumor of the liver. Here we describe a case of a 40-year-old woman who presented with abdominal pain in the upper right quadrant and giant hepatomegaly, in which imaging studies and a fine-needle liver biopsy confirmed the presence of a large EHE with an isolated lung metastasis. After balancing all possible therapeutic modalities the patient was treated conservatively with thalidomide (300 mg/day). The drug was well tolerated with minimal toxicity and the patient continues on therapy 109 months after treatment was started with no disease progression. Current therapeutic options for HEH are discussed in light of the clinical case with particular emphasis on anti-angiogenic therapies.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Abdominal Pain / etiology
  • Adult
  • Angiogenesis Inhibitors / therapeutic use*
  • Biopsy, Fine-Needle
  • Female
  • Hemangioendothelioma, Epithelioid / blood supply
  • Hemangioendothelioma, Epithelioid / complications
  • Hemangioendothelioma, Epithelioid / drug therapy*
  • Hemangioendothelioma, Epithelioid / secondary
  • Hepatomegaly / etiology
  • Humans
  • Liver Neoplasms / blood supply
  • Liver Neoplasms / complications
  • Liver Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Liver Neoplasms / pathology
  • Lung Neoplasms / blood supply
  • Lung Neoplasms / secondary*
  • Thalidomide / therapeutic use*
  • Time Factors
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Angiogenesis Inhibitors
  • Thalidomide