Objective: To evaluate the feasibility of angled cool-tip electrode for radiofrequency ablation of small superficial subcapsular liver tumors abutting abdominal wall, in order to traverse normal liver parenchyma, and thereby, obtain favorable configuration of ablation margin. Materials and Methods: In this study, we retrospectively analyzed 15 small superficial subcapsular liver tumors abutting abdominal wall in 15 patients, treated with radiofrequency ablation from March 2013 to June 2015 using a cool-tip electrode manually modified to create 25–35° angle at the junction between exposed and insulated segments. The tumors were hepatocellular carcinoma (n = 13) and metastases (n = 2: cholangiocellular carcinoma and rectosigmoid cancer), with maximum diameter of 10–26 mm (mean, 15.68 ± 5.29 mm). Under ultrasonographic guidance, the electrode tip was advanced to the depth of the tumors’ epicenter about 1 cm from the margin. The tip was re-directed to penetrate the tumor for radiofrequency ablation. Minimal ablation margin was measured at immediate post-treatment CT. Radiological images and medical records were evaluated for success rate, length of minimal ablation margin and complications. Results: Technical success rate of obtaining complete necrosis of the tumors was 100%, with no procedure-related complication. Minimal ablation margin ranged from 3–12 mm (mean, 7.07 ± 2.23 mm). CT/MRI follow-up at 21–1022 days (mean, 519.47 ± 304.51 days) revealed no local recurrence, but distant recurrence in 9 patients. Conclusion: Using an angled cool-tip electrode for radiofrequency ablation of small superficial subcapsular tumors abutting abdominal wall may be a feasible technique for obtaining adequate ablation margin and lower complication rate.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging