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Clin Endosc. 2013 Jan;46(1):38-44. doi: 10.5946/ce.2013.46.1.38. Epub 2013 Jan 31.

Current status of photodynamic therapy for bile duct cancer.

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Digestive Disease Center, Department of Internal Medicine, Konkuk University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.


The most common form in bile duct cancers is a highly desmoplastic cancer with a growth pattern characterized by periductal extension and infiltration. The prognosis of bile duct cancers, especially hilar cholangiocarcinoma, is limited by tumor spread along the biliary tree leading to refractory obstructive cholestasis, cholangitis, and liver failure. Although biliary endoprosthesis improves occlusion rates and reduces the number of therapeutic interventions, median survival time is not ameliorated. Photodynamic therapy (PDT) is a local photochemical tumor treatment that consists of a photosensitizing agent in combination with laser irradiation of a distinct wavelength. Tumor ablation with PDT combined with biliary stenting reduces cholestasis and significantly improves median survival time in selected patients with bile duct cancers.


Bile duct neoplasms; Cholangiocarcinoma; Endoprosthesis; Photodynamic therapy; Photosensitizing agents

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