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Eur J Surg Oncol. 2013 Dec;39(12):1400-6. doi: 10.1016/j.ejso.2013.08.028. Epub 2013 Sep 19.

Liver metastases in close contact to hepatic veins ablated under vascular exclusion.

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  • 1Digestive Tumours Unit, Institut Bergonié, 229 cours de l'Argonne, 33076 Bordeaux Cedex, France; Université Bordeaux Segalen, 166 cours de l'Argonne, 33076 Bordeaux, France. Electronic address: s.evrard@bordeaux.unicancer.fr.



Liver metastases (LM) in close contact to hepatic veins (HV) are a frequent cause of unresectability. Reconstruction of hepatic veins is technically difficult and outcomes are poor. Intra-operative radiofrequency ablation (IRFA) with vascular exclusion (VE) may be a useful approach.


Out of 358 patients operated for LM, 22 with LM close to a HV treated by IRFA under VE with at least one year of follow-up were included in this retrospective study. Technical success was evaluated at four months by CT scan of the ablated lesion. Complications; local, hepatic and extra-hepatic recurrence rates, and overall survival are reported.


The median number of metastases was 4.5 [range: 1-12]. Seventeen patients had bilateral metastases. The median size of ablated lesions was 2 cm [range: 1-5.5]. Seven complications occurred (1 Grade 1, 2 Grade 3b and 4 Grade IVa), with no mortality. No recurrence of ablated lesions was detected at four months or during follow-up. Seventeen patients had new or extra-hepatic lesions. Median overall survival for colorectal patients was 40 months 95%CI[17.5-not reached].


IRFA plus VE for LM in close contact to a HV is a novel approach, appearing to be a safe and effective technique which can extend the applications of liver metastases surgery.

Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


Ablation techniques; Colorectal liver metastases; Complications; Hepatic vein; Mortality; Radiofrequency ablation; Vascular exclusion

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