Ablative techniques for hepatocellular carcinoma.

Seminars in oncology

PubMedID: 11685741

Barnett CC, Curley SA. Ablative techniques for hepatocellular carcinoma. Semin Oncol. 2001;28(5):487-96.
The optimal management of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is resection, but this is feasible in only a minority of patients for a variety of reasons, including metastatic disease, major vascular invasion, end-stage liver disease, and poor hepatic reserve. Inoperable patients may be candidates for ablative procedures that may eradicate tumor while minimizing the loss of functioning hepatic tissue that is inevitable with surgical resection. Percutaneous ethanol injection (PEI), hepatic arterial chemoembolization, cryoablation, radiofrequency ablation (RFA), and microwave coagulation offer the potential of local tumor control and sometimes achieve long-term disease-free survival. This review will discuss the indications, anticipated benefits, and limitations of current ablative techniques and place these procedures in proper perspective as options for patients with HCC.