Percutaneous US-guided radiofrequency ablation of hepatocellular carcinomas: Results in 15 patients

G. Poggi, C. Gatti, F. Cupella, M. Fiori, F. Avanza, M. Baldi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: The majority of patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) cannot undergo surgery because of multifocality, location or advanced cirrhosis. Our experience with percutaneous radiofrequency ablation for treatment of patients suffering from unresectable hepatocellular carcinoma is described here. Patients and Methods: Fifteen patients (ten men and five women) with eighteen primary hepatocellular tumors underwent percutaneous radiofrequency ablation. The mean diameter of the HCCs was 32 mm (ranging from 15 mm to 62 mm). The patients were treated under ultrasound guidance using either a 18-gauge internally cooled electrode or a 14-gauge electrode with four expandible hooks. Results: Complete necrosis was achieved in 15 lesions after one session of RF ablation. The persistence of a small portion of viable tissue was seen in two lesions. One lesion was not evaluable. After a mean follow-up period of 9.2 months (range 3-24 months), eleven patients (76%) showed no sign of local or distant recurrence, one patient developed a new lesion and one of two patients with persistence of viable tissue obtained a complete necrosis after the injection of percutaneous ethanol. Moreover, a major complication (intraperitoneal bleeding requiring surgical treatment) and three minor complications (1 pleuric effusion and 2 perihepatic fluid collections that resolved spontaneously) were observed. Conclusion: RF ablation is a simple, well-tolerated and effective procedure for the treatment of unresectable hepatocellular carcinomas.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)739-742
Number of pages4
JournalAnticancer Research
Issue number1 B
Publication statusPublished - 2001


  • Hepatocellular carcinoma
  • Liver interventional procedure
  • Radiofrequency ablation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology

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