Clinical Drug Investigation

, Volume 32, Supplement 2, pp 25–35 | Cite as

Current Status of Hepatocellular Carcinoma Treatment in Japan

Practical Use of Sorafenib (Nexavar®)
  • Norihiro KokudoEmail author
  • Junta Nakajima
  • Etsuro Hatano
  • Kazushi Numata
Review Article


The efficacy of sorafenib in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) has been demonstrated in two pivotal clinical trials: the European SHARP trial and a second trial that recruited patients in the Asia-Pacific region. Sorafenib was approved for the treatment of advanced HCC in Japan based on the results of these studies.

This article presents experiences with sorafenib in patients with HCC at three institutions in Japan, representing the viewpoints of a liver surgeon and a hepatologist at university hospitals, and a hepatologist at a community hospital. The three physicians discuss representative cases and current clinical practice at their institutions, and their recommendations for the use of sorafenib in the wider clinical setting.

Overall, the experiences at these institutions show that sorafenib is most effective when administered for a long time, and the management of adverse events (AEs) [including dose-reduction and modification] is critical to achieving high levels of adherence to treatment. A team-focussed treatment strategy that includes patient counselling and follow-up can contribute to managing AEs to ensure successful continuation of sorafenib therapy. In addition, a proposed definition of unresponsiveness to transarterial chemoembolization and the implications of treatment lag on the outcomes of sorafenib therapy, as well as measures for the prevention and treatment of hand-foot skin reaction are discussed.


Sorafenib Tace Skin Reaction Hepatic Arterial Infusion Chemotherapy Sorafenib Treatment 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© Adis Data Information BV 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Norihiro Kokudo
    • 1
    Email author
  • Junta Nakajima
    • 2
  • Etsuro Hatano
    • 3
  • Kazushi Numata
    • 4
  1. 1.Hepato-biliary-pancreatic Surgery Division, Department of Surgery, Graduate School of MedicineUniversity of TokyoBunkyo-ku, TokyoJapan
  2. 2.Third Department of Internal MedicineObihiro-Kosei General HospitalObihiro-City, HokkaidoJapan
  3. 3.Department of Surgery, Graduate School of MedicineKyoto UniversityKyotoJapan
  4. 4.Gastroenterological CenterYokohama City University Medical CenterMinamiku, Yokohama, KanagawaJapan

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