Thoracic tumors treated with CT-guided radiofrequency ablation: Initial experience

Kotaro Yasui, Susumu Kanazawa, Yoshifumi Sano, Toshiyoshi Fujiwara, Shunsuke Kagawa, Hidefumi Mimura, Shuichi Dendo, Takashi Mukai, Hiroyasu Fujiwara, Toshihiro Iguchi, Tsuyoshi Hyodo, Nobuyoshi Shimizu, Noriaki Tanaka, Yoshio Hiraki

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

200 Citations (Scopus)


PURPOSE: To determine the effectiveness of computed tomography (CT)-guided radiofrequency (RF) ablation of malignant thoracic tumors. MATERIALS AND METHODS: CT-guided RF ablations of 99 malignant thoracic tumors (3-80 mm in largest diameter; mean, 19.5 mm) were performed in 35 patients in 54 sessions. Ablation was performed with an RF generator by using a single internally cooled electrode. Tumors were both primary (three lesions) and secondary (pulmonary or pleural metastases, 96 lesions). Follow-up was 1-17 months (mean, 7.1 months). Follow-up CT and histopathologic examinations were evaluated. Univariate analysis was performed with the Fisher exact test, and Welch t test was used to evaluate differences between group means. P < .05 represented a significant difference. The maximal diameter of each residual tumor or local recurrence or the proportion of primary lesions of pulmonary metastatic tumors with recurrence after RF ablation were analyzed. Complications, management, and outcomes of the complications were recorded. RESULTS: The appearance of each ablation zone, including the target tumor and surrounding normal lung parenchyma, showed involution at follow-up CT. Local recurrence was demonstrated histopathologically or radiologically in nine tumors. The other 90 tumors showed no growth progression at follow-up CT. Probable complete coagulation necrosis obtained with initial RF ablation was achieved in 91% (90 of 99) of the tumors. The mean maximal diameter of the nine tumors (19.6 mm ± 7.7 [SD]) was not significantly different (P = .994) from that of the other 90 tumors (19.5 mm ± 13.0). Primary lesions of those nine metastatic tumors varied and did not demonstrate a specific tendency. Complications included pneumothorax, fever higher than 37.5°C, hemoptysis, cough, pleural effusion, abscess formation, and hemothorax. The overall complication rate was 76% (41 of 54 sessions). CONCLUSION: RF ablation seems to be a promising treatment for malignant thoracic tumors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)850-857
Number of pages8
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2004


  • Computed tomography (CT), guidance
  • Radiofrequency (RF) ablation
  • Thorax, CT
  • Thorax, neoplasms

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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