Background: Pressurized intraperitoneal aerosol chemotherapy (PIPAC) is a new intraabdominal technique to approach non-resectable peritoneal carcinomatosis (PC). PIPAC can be performed alone or alternated with systemic chemotherapy to increase tumor regression. We describe our initial experience performed in an expert hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy (HIPEC) French center to demonstrate the safety and the feasibility of PIPAC.
Methods: Between January 2016 and March 2019, PIPAC was proposed to 43 consecutive patients affected by digestive, ovarian, peritoneal and mammary carcinomatosis. Initially PIPAC was proposed to patients non eligible for cytoreductive surgery for palliative purposes. In five patients we associated PIPAC to systemic chemotherapy to improve tumor regression and enhance the chance of patients to undergo HIPEC. Three PIPAC treatments were supposed to be performed for each patient with an interval of 6 weeks in between each procedure. Peritoneal biopsies were always performed to evaluate microscopic tumor regression. In case of postoperative clinical deterioration or quick tumor progression during the cycles, PIPAC was interrupted. Depending on the primary tumor, chemotherapies used were oxaliplatin or a combination of cisplatin and doxorubicin.
Results: Twenty-six (60.4%) patients have already had a surgical resection or intervention of primary cancer removal. In 5 patients abdominal access was impossible. Of the 38 patients operated, seventy-one procedures were performed. In the series, one patient died because of tumor progression. Only one major complication occurred intraoperatively. Two of thirteen patients receiving oxaliplatin had postoperative abdominal pain and needed more drugs assumption and a longer hospitalization. Three patients after a three cycles procedure underwent HIPEC. Nine of the patients who had at least two PIPACs had last biopsies showing a major or complete tumor response.
Conclusion: PIPAC is a safe and feasible procedure that can be performed in patients with peritoneal carcinomatosis initially not eligible for surgery to reduce tumor invasion or for palliation to reduce symptoms. Contraindications are bowel obstruction and multiple intraabdominal adhesions.
Keywords: HIPEC; PIPAC; PRGS; Peritoneal carcinomatosis; Surgery.