FAQs: Peritoneal Surface Malignancy Program

Here are answers to some of the most asked questions about the Peritoneal Surface Malignancy Program at Mount Sinai. We hope you find them helpful.

A: The peritoneum is a thin membrane that covers most abdominal organs and lines the abdominal cavity.

A: Peritoneal surface malignancies include a variety of tumours that involve abdominal organs and the peritoneal lining. Usually caused by appendix, mesothelioma, and colorectal cancer.

A: You have been referred to this program to be provided with expert advice and to develop a treatment plan that is best for you. In some cases, these cancers may be treated with cytoreductive surgery and hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy (HIPEC).

The Nurse Clinical Coordinator is here to help organize your plan or care, answer any questions or concerns, and offer support.

A: Cytoreductive means reducing the number of tumour cells. During surgery, the surgeon will attempt to remove the entire visible tumour.

A: Hyperthermic Intraperitoneal Chemotherapy (HIPEC): is used in the treatment of some cases. HIPEC surgery is an advanced, complex procedure used for the surgical removal of cancerous tumours, and often removal of any organs that have been affected by the cancer. Once all visible tumour is removed, heated chemotherapy is circulated through your abdomen during the operation using an infusion pump. This is intended to kill any leftover cancerous cells that cannot be seen. Mount Sinai Hospital is one of the few centers in Canada that offers this treatment.