, Volume 23, Issue 4, pp 295-300
Date: 22 Dec 2011

Radiofrequency ablation for postoperative recurrences of intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma

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Abstract

Objective

Most recurrent intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma (RICC) lost the opportunity of radical resection while most nonsurgical management failed to prolong patients’ survival. The efficacy and safety of radiofrequency ablation (RFA) as a local treatment for recurrent hepatocellular carcinoma have been confirmed by many clinical studies. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the efficacy, long-term survival and complications of RFA for RICC.

Methods

A total of 12 patients with 19 RICCs after radical resection were included in this study. The tumors were 1.9–6.8 cm at the maximum diameter (median, 3.2±1.6 cm). All patients were treated with ultrasound guided RFA. There were two RFA approaches including percutaneous and open.

Results

A total of 18 RFA treatment sessions were performed. Ablation was successful (evaluated by 1-month CT after the initial RFA procedure) in 18 (94.7%) of 19 tumors. By a median follow-up period of 29.9 months after RFA, 5 patients received repeated RFA because of intrahepatic lesion recurrence. The median local recurrence-free survival period and median event-free survival period after RFA were 21.0 months and 13.0 months, respectively. The median overall survival was 30 months, and the 1- and 3-year survival rates were 87.5% and 37.5%, respectively. The complication rate was 5.6% (1/18 sessions). The only one major complication was pleural effusion requiring thoracentesis.

Conclusion

This study showed RFA may effectively and safely manage RICC with 3-year survival of 37.5%. It provides a treatment option for these RICC patients who lost chance for surgery.

This work was supported by the National “863” High-Tech Res & Dev Program of China (No. 2007AA02Z4B8) and the National Science Foundation for Young Scholars of China (No. 81101745).