Percutaneous Radiofrequency Ablation for Liver Cancer

Percutaneous Radiofrequency Ablation for Liver Cancer


  “The first thing I have to do is accommodating to the therapeutic setting for radiofrequency tumor ablation therapy” , said Dr. Li-Wei Wu, a gastroenterologist in Taipei Municipal Wanfang Hospital. Ever trained at the top cancer treatment center in Paris, he emphasizes that radiofrequency ablation treatment in that center was regularly conducted in the operating theater under general anesthesia. This ensures that the procedure will not be interrupted because of treatment-related pain. The physician can concentrate on the procedure itself in a clean and undisturbed condition in collaboration with anesthesiologist. He needs not to worry about monitoring the vital signs or any discomfort of the patient during the treatment. For the past eight years, no single patient evaded the treatment and no any procedure was terminated prematurely because of pain related to the therapy.

  The multi-needle radiofrequency thermal ablation (RFA) enables larger treatment area, and thereby reducing the probability of cancer recurrence. Tumor less than 4cm in diameter can be ablated by no-touch multibipolar RFA using 6 needles surrounding the lesion. This minimally invasive percutaneous tumor RFA concept is similar to the traditional surgical approach, but it leaves no wound on the skin. More importantly, the needles do not touch the tumor directly to avoid the risk of spreading cancer cells.   Moreover, because the treatment scope is more comprehensive than traditional single-needle RFA, the risk of local recurrence and repeated treatment can be significantly reduced or exempted to enhance patient’s quality of life.

  Comparing to the traditional single-needle RFA, the multi-needle RFA mode has much better performance, and is satisfactory for eradication ablation of the medium to large cancers or those with blood vessel invasion..

  Eager to know the strengths for liver cancer RFA therapy in different parts of the world, Dr. Wu also went to the University of Tokyo Hospital, where he learned the technique for precise tumor positioning/ localization.