Know More About HIPEC Surgery 


HIPEC surgery, also known as hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy, is a procedure that combines surgery and chemotherapy to treat advanced cancers that have spread to the lining of the abdomen (peritoneum).  

During the procedure, the surgeon removes visible tumors from the peritoneum and then delivers heated chemotherapy directly into the abdomen to kill any remaining cancer cells. 

Why is HIPEC Surgery Performed? 

HIPEC surgery is primarily used to treat advanced cancers that have spread to the peritoneum, including: 

  • Appendix cancer 
  • Colorectal cancer 
  • Ovarian cancer 
  • Mesothelioma 
  • Adrenal Cancer 
  • Pancreatic Cancer 
  • Liver Cancer 
  • Gastric (Stomach) Cancer 

The goal of Hipec surgery is to remove as much visible tumor as possible and then deliver chemotherapy directly to the abdominal cavity to kill any remaining cancer cells.  

How to prepare for HIPEC surgery? 

Stop smoking several weeks before the procedure. 

Avoid eating or drinking anything after midnight on the night before the procedure. 

Antibiotics will be supplied to you three times a day to prevent infection 

You need to take a shower the night before the procedure 

Your doctor will provide you with a fluid high in carbohydrates to help you increase strength and speed up recovery 

Make a list of each medication currently being taken 

What to Expect During HIPEC Surgery? 

Under general anesthesia several small incisions are made in your abdomen to remove any visible tumors. 

Then the surgeon will deliver heated chemotherapy directly into the abdominal cavity for about 90 minutes and ensure that it reaches all areas of the abdomen. 

You will likely stay in the hospital for several days after the procedure. 

Talk to your doctor about whether HIPEC surgery is right for you. 

What to Expect After HIPEC Surgery? 

  • You may need to stay in the hospital for one to two weeks after the procedure 
  • Nutrition, medications, and fluids can be given to you intravenously (IV) or through a feeding tube 
  • Your heart rate, blood pressure, and oxygen levels will all be monitored  
  • A nose tube or a face mask will be attached to provide oxygen to you 
  • A flexible band will be wrapped over your abdomen to support your muscles 
  • A drainage tube to drain fluid from your stomach may be present 

HIPEC Surgery: Aftercare 

  • Take pain medications to manage any discomfort after the surgery 
  • Consume a lot of calories to increase energy and a lot of protein to aid in recovery 
  • Eat small, frequent meals throughout the day if you tend to feel hungry or full quickly 
  • Use stool softeners since painkillers impede your bowel movements. 
  • Drink a lot of fluids all day long to stay hydrated 
  • Stay away from exercises that work your core and abdominal muscles 
  • Avoid bathing, swimming, or using a hot tub until the incision has healed 
  • Never miss follow-up appointments to evaluate your healing process  

Myths and Facts About Hipec Surgery 

Myth: Hipec surgery is a cure for cancer. 

Fact: While Hipec surgery can be an effective treatment for advanced cancers that have spread to the peritoneum, it is not a cure for cancer. The goal of the surgery is to remove as much visible tumor as possible and then deliver chemotherapy directly to the abdominal cavity to kill any remaining cancer cells. 

Myth: Hipec surgery is extremely risky. 

Fact: Like any surgical procedure, Hipec surgery carries some risks, including bleeding, infection, and damage to nearby organs. However, the procedure is generally safe when performed by experienced surgeons at specialized centers. 


Q. What are the benefits of HIPEC surgery? 

  • Decreased toxic side effects 
  • More intense doses of chemotherapy which can destroy more cancer cells 
  • Improved survival rates 
  • Reduced risk of recurrence 
  • One treatment session instead of multiple treatment sessions over several weeks 
  • Beneficial for patients with inoperable or advanced-stage cancer 

After HIPEC Surgery: When to Call a Doctor? 

Call your doctor if you experience: 

  1. Fever above 1010 F  
  1. Nausea and vomiting that does not improve 
  1. Severe swelling or drainage around your incision site 
  1. Worsening pain 

Is HIPEC surgery safe?  

HIPEC is an effective treatment option for many abdominal and chest cancer patients and has a higher success rate than other advanced oncology surgical procedures. HIPEC is elected as one of the most effective cancer treatments compared to traditional chemotherapy or radiation treatment. 

How long does it take to recover from HIPEC surgery? 

The recovery time after HIPEC surgery varies depending on the individual’s health, age, and the extent of surgery performed. Generally, it takes about 4 to 6 weeks to fully recover from the surgery, although it may take longer for some patients.