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Transarterial Embolization

Glossary

transarterial embolization

A procedure in which the blood supply to a tumor or an abnormal area of tissue is blocked. During transarterial embolization, a small incision (cut) is made in the inner thigh and a catheter (thin, flexible tube) is inserted and guided into an artery near the tumor or abnormal tissue. Once the catheter is in place, small particles made of tiny gelatin sponges or beads are injected. This blocks the artery and stops the flow of blood to the tumor or abnormal area of tissue. Transarterial embolization is used to treat some types of liver cancer, kidney cancer, and neuroendocrine tumors. It may also be used to treat uterine fibroids, aneurysms, and other conditions. Also called arterial embolization and TAE.

Last updated: 2014-05-21

Source: The National Cancer Institute's Dictionary of Cancer Terms (http://www.cancer.gov/dictionary)