Reuters Health Information (2005-07-26): RF ablation better than injection of ethanol or acetic acid for small liver tumors
RF ablation better than injection of ethanol or acetic acid for small liver tumors
Last Updated: 2005-07-26 17:17:04 -0400 (Reuters Health)
NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - For patients with
hepatocellular carcinomas measuring 3 centimeters or less,
radiofrequency thermal ablation provides a better clinical outcome --
but is associated with more major complications -- than percutaneous
injection of ethanol or acetic acid, results of a new study indicate.
Dr. S. M. Lin and colleagues from Chang Gung University in Taipei,
Taiwan, assessed tumor recurrence and survival rates among 187 such
patients who were randomly assigned to one of these three treatments
and followed for a mean of 26.3 months.
Radiofrequency thermal ablation was superior to the other two
treatments with respect to lower local recurrence and significantly
higher overall and cancer-free survival, the team reports in the August
issue of the journal Gut.
Specifically, 1- and 3-year local recurrence rates were 10% and 14%
in the radiofrequency ablation arm versus 16% and 34% in the ethanol
arm and 14% and 31% in the acetic acid arm.
One- and 3-year overall survival rates were 93% and 74% in the
radiofrequency ablation arm versus 88% and 51% in the ethanol arm and
90% and 53% in the acetic acid arm.
One- and 3-year cancer-free survival was 74% and 40% for
radiofrequency ablation versus 70% and 21% for ethanol and 71% and 23%
for acetic acid.
However, major complications occurred in 4.8% of patients treated
with radiofrequency ablation (two hemothorax and one gastric
perforation but no deaths) and in none in the other two groups.
This study provides some of the first comparative controlled data on
these three treatments for small hepatocellular carcinomas in terms of
complications and clinical outcome, the authors note in their report.