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J Cancer Res Ther. 2019;15(7):1535-1540. doi: 10.4103/jcrt.JCRT_322_19.

Comparison between ultrasound-guided percutaneous radiofrequency and microwave ablation in benign thyroid nodules.

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Department of Endocrinology; Department of Endocrinology, Minhang Brunch, Zhongshan Hospital, Fudan University, Shanghai, China.
Department of Endocrinology, Zhongshan Hospital, Fudan University, Shanghai, China.
Department of Ultrasound, Zhongshan Hospital, Fudan University, Shanghai, China.
Department of Interventional Radiology, Zhongshan Hospital, Fudan University, Shanghai, China.



The purpose of this study was to compare the efficacy and safety of radiofrequency ablation (RFA) and microwave ablation (MWA) for the treatment of benign thyroid nodules (BTNs).


Patients with BTNs were treated in our hospital, including 72 patients treated with RFA and 100 patients treated with MWA from June 2016 to March 2019. The volume reduction rates (VRRs), thyroid function, clinical status, and complications were compared at each postoperative duration to evaluate the efficacy and safety of the two modalities.


The mean VRRs of the RFA group vs. the MWA group at 1, 3, 6, and 12 months were 22.7±13.4% vs. 24.0±16.1% (P = 0.681), 56.1±19.5% vs. 54.8±22.8% (P = 0.788), 77.9±21.0% vs. 68.7±19.1% (P = 0.038), and 85.4±18.9% vs. 75.8±19.4% (P = 0.029), respectively. There was no significant difference in the VRRs between the two treatments at 1 and 3 months and the RFA group achieved higher VRRs than MWA group at 6 and 12 months. Moreover, the symptom and cosmetic scores decreased significantly in both groups and all patients succeeded in preserving thyroid function. Of the total patients, 2.8% in the RFA group and 4% in the MWA group experienced voice changes after undergoing thyroid ablation, and one patient in the RFA group had intraoperative hemorrhage of about 10 mL.


RFA and MWA are both effective and safe techniques for treating BTNs. Higher VRRs were observed at the 6- and 12-month follow-ups in the RFA group.


Microwave ablation; radiofrequency ablation; volume reduction rate

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