What is Tumor Ablation?
Tumor ablation is a minimally invasive procedure that kills tumors using heat, cold, or microwave energy. Using image guidance, the energy is targeted at the tumor, sparing the surrounding healthy tissue. Ablation is most commonly used to treat both cancerous and non-cancerous tumors of the liver, kidney, lung, and bone. Liver ablation is the most common tumor ablation procedure.
Types of Ablation
- Radiofrequency ablation (RFA) – using imaging technology and needle-like probes, radiofrequency energy is delivered directly to the tumor, destroying the cancerous cells. This is used to treat tumors of the lung, liver, kidney, bone, and other organs
- Microwave ablation – using imaging technology and needle-like probes, microwave energy is delivered directly to the tumor, destroying the cancerous cells and treating tumors of the lung, liver, kidney, bone, and other organs
- Cryoablation – a needle is inserted at the location of your tumor and extremely cold temperatures are used to freeze tumors and destroy cancerous cells. It is used in tumors of the kidney, prostate, lung, liver, bone, and soft tissue. This procedure is also very effective at eliminating tumor-related pain
Criteria for Tumor Ablation
If you have any of the following conditions or disease, you may require a tumor ablation:
- Single kidney
- Medical or surgical conditions that prevent surgery
- Ideally used to treat tumors less than 4 cm in size
- Liver tumors that have not responded to chemotherapy or are not suitable for surgery
- For lung cancer, it is most effective when all cancer is localized in lungs
What to Expect During an Ablation Procedure
Tumor ablations are a minimally invasive procedure, performed under general anesthesia. Typically, you will only stay in the hospital one day following the procedure.
Advantages of minimally invasive ablation surgery include:
- Small incisions
- Low-risk of damage to surrounding tissue
- Can be repeated if tumor returns
- Short hospital stay (usually 1 day)
Tumor Ablations Using Interventional Radiology
Our interventional radiologists have specialty training in providing targeted tumor ablations using image guidance. Interventional radiology procedures can often replace open surgical procedures, meaning there is less risk, less pain, and shorter recovery times for you.
Bassett Healthcare Network offers tumor ablation procedures in Central New York, including in Cooperstown.