Effectiveness of hyperthermia in clinical stage IV pancreatic cancer

Survival rate

Survival rate



There had been recent progress of chemotherapy for patients with pancreatic cancer, providing improvement of the patients’ prognosis. Increasing the survival rate for patients with advanced pancreatic cancer with stage IV is still challenging. Hyperthermia in combination with chemotherapy is expected as an effective treatment for such patients. The results in this study indicate that the treatment of hyperthermia combined with chemotherapy have a possibility to contribute to prolong the survival of the patients even in the clinical stage Ⅳ.


• 28 patients (ages from 40 – 79 years old)
• Patients with advanced pancreatic cancer in clinical stage IV
• Patients had distant metastasis or peritoneal dissemination
• Some patients were treated with Chemotherapy
• 9 patients had the history of surgery for the primary tumor and the rest of the patients had no surgery.

The aim of this study is to investigate whether oncothermia contribute to improve the outcome of the pancreatic cancer patients in clinical stage iv.


• Heating device of THERMOTRON RF-8 was used in this treatment.
• The patients were administered for 50 minutes each time just after chemotherapy 3 or 4 times a month. The maximal temperature of the stomach was 43 to 44°C during the treatment by RF power of 1200 Watt.


Evaluation of outcomes in patients was expressed as complete remission (CR), partial response (PR), stable disease (SD), progress disease (PD) and survival rate.
This evaluation was done at 3, 6, 12, 18 and 24 months after the beginning of this therapy.
In the response to the treatment at 3 months, CR was 0 %, PR was 18%, SD was 39% and PD was 42%. At 6 months, CR was 0%, PR was 21%, SD was 24% and PD was 28%. At 12 months, CR was 6%, PR was 0%, SD was 6% and PD was 59%. At 18 months, CR was 6%, PR was 0%, SD was 0% and PD was 19%.

• The outcome is getting worse, but at 6 months nearly 50% were keeping PR or SD and at 1 year 41% was still alive. Up to date, 12 patients for more than 2 years.
• The survival rate of 1-year and 2-years were 41% and 15% respectively.• According to the registered data in 2010 in Japan, 1-year OS and 2-year OS for stage IV pancreatic cancer patients treated with chemotherapy alone is 22.7%and 6.1% respectively.

Case Report

• 58 years old male with invasive pancreas ductal carcinoma in the pancreas head and multiple liver metastasis.
• Chemotherapy was administered every 4 week for 2 years.
• Oncothermia was started 2 months after the beginning of the chemotherapy. It was done
on the same day after the chemotherapy.
• Before the treatment, low density tumor was located close to the duodenum.
• After 1 year, the primary tumor disappeared and after 2 years, the head of the pancreas
was still tumor free.
• Liver metastasis was observed before the treatment but 1 year later those disappeared
and 2 years later the patient is still tumor free.
• Before the treatment, the CA19-9a tumor marker level was quite high, but 3 months after
starting the therapy, the tumor markers decreased within the normal level.
• This situation continued at 2 years after starting this therapy. These results indicated that
this patient is in clinical complete remission.


Oncothermia treatment combined with chemotherapy have a strong possibility to contribute to prolong the survival of the patients even if in the clinical stage IV.

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Scientific article publishing date : 25/10/2019

Immucura identifier : BSC21_055EN