Background: We compared outcomes in patients with solitary colorectal liver metastases treated by either hepatic resection (HR) or radiofrequency ablation (RFA). Methods: A retrospective analysis from a prospective database was performed on 67 consecutive patients with solitary colorectal liver metastases treated by either HR or RFA. Results: Forty-two patients underwent HR and 25 patients underwent RFA. The 5-year overall and local recurrence-free survival rates after HR (50.1% and 89.7%, respectively) were higher than after RFA (25.5% and 69.7%, respectively) (P = .0263 and .028, respectively). In small tumors less than 3 cm (n = 38), the 5-year survival rates between HR and RFA were similar, including overall (56.1% vs 55.4%, P = .451) and local recurrence-free (95.7% vs 85.6%, P = .304) survival rates. On multivariate analysis, tumor size, metastases treatment, and primary node status were significant prognostic factors. Conclusions: HR had better outcomes than RFA for recurrence and survival after treatment of solitary colorectal liver metastases. However, in tumors smaller than 3 cm, RFA can be recommended as an alternative treatment to patients who are not candidates for surgery because the liver metastases is poorly located anatomically, the functional hepatic reserve after a resection would be insufficient, the patient's comorbidity inhibits a major surgery, or extrahepatic metastases are present.
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