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Acad Radiol. 2018 Jan;25(1):88-94. doi: 10.1016/j.acra.2017.07.011. Epub 2017 Aug 23.

Further Investigation on High-intensity Focused Ultrasound (HIFU) Treatment for Thyroid Nodules: Effectiveness Related to Baseline Volumes.

Author information

1
Department of Nuclear Medicine, University Hospital Frankfurt, Theodor-Stern-Kai 7, 60590 Frankfurt am Main, Germany. Electronic address: michaelsennert@yahoo.de.
2
Department of Nuclear Medicine, University Hospital Frankfurt, Theodor-Stern-Kai 7, 60590 Frankfurt am Main, Germany; German Center for Thermoablation of Thyroid Nodules, University Hospital Frankfurt, Germany.
3
Department of Nuclear Medicine, University Hospital Frankfurt, Theodor-Stern-Kai 7, 60590 Frankfurt am Main, Germany.

Abstract

RATIONALE AND OBJECTIVES:

Several minimally invasive thermal techniques have been developed for the treatment of benign thyroid nodules. A new technique for this indication is high-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU). The aim of this study was to assess effectiveness in varying preablative nodule volumes and whether outcome patterns that were reported during studies with other thermal ablative procedures for thyroid nodule ablation would also apply to HIFU.

MATERIALS AND METHODS:

Over the last 2 years, 19 nodules in 15 patients (12 women) whose average age was 58.7 years (36-80) were treated with HIFU in an ambulatory setting. Patients with more than one nodule were treated in multiple sessions on the same day. The mean nodule volume was 2.56 mL (range 0.13-7.67 mL). The therapeutic ultrasound probe (Echopulse THC900888-H) used in this series functions with a frequency of 3 MHz, reaching temperatures of approximately 80°C-90°C and delivering an energy ranging from 87.6 to 320.3 J per sonication. To assess the effectiveness of thermal ablation, nodular volume was measured at baseline and at 3-month follow-up. The end point of the study was the volume reduction assessment after 3 months' follow-up. Therapeutic success was defined as volume reduction of more than 50% compared to baseline. This study was retrospectively analyzed using the Wilcoxon signed rank test and Kendall tau.

RESULTS:

The median percentage volume reduction of all 19 nodules after 3 months was 58%. An inverse correlation between preablative nodular volume and percentage volume shrinking was found (tau = -0.46, P < .05). Therapeutic success was achieved in 10 out of 19 patients (53%).

CONCLUSIONS:

HIFU of benign thyroid nodules can be carried out as an alternative therapy for nodules ≤3 mL if patients are refusing surgery or radioiodine therapy.

KEYWORDS:

HIFU; thermal ablation; thyroid nodule; ultrasound

PMID:
28844602
DOI:
10.1016/j.acra.2017.07.011
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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