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Ann Oncol. 2010 Oct;21(10):2017-22. doi: 10.1093/annonc/mdq098. Epub 2010 Mar 24.

Long-term outcome of image-guided percutaneous radiofrequency ablation of lung metastases: an open-labeled prospective trial of 148 patients.

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Hepatobiliary and Surgical Oncology Unit, UNSW Department of Surgery, St George Hospital, Kogarah, Sydney, New South Wales 2217, Australia.



Image-guided percutaneous radiofrequency ablation (RFA) has been proposed as an efficacious local therapy for lung metastases in nonsurgical candidates. Reports of long-term outcome from this treatment have been limited.


A prospective open-labeled trial of RFA was initiated in November 2000 for treatment of lung metastases in nonsurgical candidates. RFA was carried out under fluoroscopic computed tomography. Treatment complications and survival parameters were analyzed.


Of 148 patients treated, 66 patients (46%) had a complete response, 38 patents (26%) had a partial response, 57 patients (39%) had stable disease and 23 patients (16%) had progressive disease. The median progression-free survival was 11 months [95% confidence interval (CI) 9-14]. The median overall survival and 3- and 5-year survivals were 51 months (95% CI 19-83) and 60% and 45%, respectively. Disease-free interval (P = 0.013) and response to treatment (P = 0.002) were independent predictors for overall survival. Complications occurred in up to 45% of patients, of which 45 patients (30%) required chest tube placement.


This analysis confirms that RFA of lung metastases may achieve long-term survival in nonsurgical candidates with an acceptable complication rate hence supporting its incorporation into the oncosurgical management of lung metastases for the purposes of cure, stabilization and disease prolongation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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