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

T. Livraghi, S. N. Goldberg, L. Solbiati, F. Meloni, T. Ierace, G. S. Gazelle

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


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.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)145-149
Number of pages5
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2001


  • Breast neoplasms, metastases, 00.324
  • Liver neoplasms, secondary, 761.332
  • Liver, CT, 761.12112
  • Radiofrequency (RF) ablation, 761.1269

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology


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