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Radiology. 2001 Jul;220(1):145-9.

Percutaneous radio-frequency ablation of liver metastases from breast cancer: initial experience in 24 patients.

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1
Department of Radiology, Ospedale Civile, Vimercate, Italy.

Abstract

PURPOSE:

To evaluate the authors' initial experience in a consecutive series of 24 patients with breast cancer liver metastases treated with radio-frequency (RF) ablation.

MATERIALS AND METHODS:

Twenty-four consecutive patients with 64 metastases measuring 1.0--6.6 cm in diameter (mean, 1.9 cm) underwent ultrasonography-guided percutaneous RF ablation with 18-gauge, internally cooled electrodes. Treatment was performed with the patient under conscious sedation and analgesia or general anesthesia. A single lesion was treated in 16 patients, and multiple lesions were treated in eight patients. Follow-up with serial computed tomography ranged from 4 to 44 months (mean, 10 months; median, 19 months).

RESULTS:

Complete necrosis was achieved in 59 (92%) of 64 lesions. Among the 59 lesions, complete necrosis required a single treatment session in 58 lesions (92%) and two treatment sessions in one lesion (2%). In 14 (58%) of 24 patients, new metastases developed during follow-up. Ten (71%) of these 14 patients developed new liver metastases. Currently, 10 (63%) of 16 patients whose lesions were initially confined to the liver are free of disease. One patient died of progressive brain metastases. No major complications occurred. Two minor complications were observed.

CONCLUSION:

On the basis of preliminary study results, percutaneous RF ablation appears to be a simple, safe, and effective treatment for focal liver metastases in selected patients with breast cancer.

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