Radio-frequency ablation (RFA) for post-chemotherapeutic metastatic germ cell tumors as minimally invasive salvage therapy

Jun Fujiwara, Terukazu Nakamura, Takumi Shiraishi, Kazuya Mikami, Natsuki Takaha, Osamu Ukimura, Akihiro Kawauchi, Tsuneharu Miki, Takuji Yamagami, Tsunehiko Nishimura

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Radio-frequency ablation (RFA) has been successfully applied for local control of metastatic tumor. The aim of this study was to assess the effectiveness and safety of RFA to post-chemotherapeutic metastatic germ cell tumors (GCTs). As combined modality therapy, RFA was performed to 42 tumors in 19 patients of GCTs at our institution between November 2000 and December 2008. RFA was performed for 10 liver metastatic tumors (in 6 cases), 32 lung metastatic tumors (in 13 cases), and median age was 36 years old (range 20-53) and the median tumor size was 12 mm (range 2-40). We used Cool-tip RF system (straight electrode needle of the internal cooling type, Radionics, Palm Coast, USA) for RFA with ultrasound or CT fluorosent guidance under intravenous or local anesthesia. The therapeutic effect was assessed by the contrast-enhanced CT or MRI. When contrast enhancement was remained in the tumor, the treatment was repeated. The 28 evaluable lesions followed were with median 25 months in the term of the surveillance, and 9 tumors were treated by an additional session of RFA repeatedly, complete response (CR) was achieved in 12 out of 12 tumors (100%) with tumor maker normalization. On the other hand, 12 out of 16 tumors (75%) without marker normalization showed CR. All of the 24 tumors with tumor diameter of 30 mm or less achieved CR, and the tumor greater than 30 mm achieved no CR. Major complications included pneumothorax (n = 9) and hemato-thoraxes (n = 2), but no complications in surrounding organs. The chest drainage tube was required in 4 cases (36%). RFA might be an alternative therapeutic option of combined modality therapy as salvage therapy for post-chemotherapeutic metastatic germ cell tumors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2117-2120
Number of pages4
JournalJapanese Journal of Cancer and Chemotherapy
Issue number12
StatePublished - Nov 2009


  • Metastatic germ cell tumors
  • RFA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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