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Int J Hyperthermia. 2019;36(1):473-476. doi: 10.1080/02656736.2019.1590654. Epub 2019 Mar 28.

The impact of technical parameters on ablation volume during MR-guided focused ultrasound of desmoid tumors.

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a Department of Radiology and Biomedical Imaging , University of California, San Francisco , San Francisco , CA , USA.
b Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics , University of California, San Francisco , San Francisco , CA , USA.



Desmoid tumors are benign, locally aggressive soft tissue tumors derived from fibroblasts. Magnetic resonance-guided focused ultrasound (MRgFUS) is a safe and effective treatment for desmoid tumors. The purpose of this study was to retrospectively review the MRgFUS treatments of desmoid tumors at our institution to determine which technical treatment parameters contributed most significantly to the accumulation of thermal dose.


The study protocol was approved by the local IRB. We retrospectively reviewed data from MRgFUS treatments performed in histologically-confirmed desmoid tumors, over a period of 18 months. Sonication parameter means were compared with ANOVA. Mixed effects and linear regression models were used to evaluate the relative contribution of different parameters to thermal dose volume.


Nine-hundred thirty-six sonications were reviewed in 13 treatments. Accumulated dose per sonication was greatest for elongated sonications (0.96 cc ± 0.90) compared to short (0.88 ± 0.93 cc) and nominal (0.55 ± 0.70 cc) sonications, p < .001. 65.2% of short sonications resulted in high percentage ablations, compared to 46.0% of nominal and 35.1% of elongated sonications. Standardized beta coefficients (anticipated increased volume in cc per unit) for power, duration, energy and average temperature were 0.006, 0.057, 0.00035 and 0.03, p < .001. Regarding dose efficacy, dose area contributed the greatest to this variability - 50.7% (45.5-54.8%), followed by distance - 16.6% (12.9-20.0%).


A variety of sonication parameters significantly contributed to thermal ablation volume following MRgFUS of desmoid tumors, in reproducible patterns. This work can serve as the basis for future models working toward improved planning for MRgFUS treatments.


Focused ultrasound; HIFU; MRgFUS; desmoid tumors; thermal ablation

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