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A Journal on Surgery

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Minerva Chirurgica 2006 February;61(1):63-9


language: Italian

Open radiofrequency liver resection: technical details

Garavoglia M., Ricci A., D’Agostino G., Butera F.

Clinica Chirurgica Facoltà di Medicina e Chirurgia Università del Piemonte Orientale, Novara


Aim. Radiofrequency (RF) for the treatment of hepatic neoplasms can be performed through percutaneous, laparoscopic or open surgery. The aim of this study was to point out the details of the role of open RF (ORF).
Methods. Between November 2002 and Novem-ber 2003, we performed 13 ORFs. Seven patients had an association with chronic liver cirrhosis. With the aid of intraoperative single, internally cooled needle RF, 12 liver resections were performed (7 subsegmentectomies, 3 segmentectomies, 1 left lateral lobectomy, and 1 right lobectomy). In 1 case RF was applied directly to the tumor lesion. In all cases ultrasonography (US) was performed intraoperatively, other lesions were found in 7.7% of the cases. RF energy was applied along the margins of the tumor to create «zones of necrosis» before resection with a scalpel.
Results. Average operating time for ORF alone was 74.4 minutes (range 30-115 minutes). Mean intraoperative blood loss during the procedure was 104 mL (range 25-250 mL), and blood transfusions were required in 3 patients. Mean hospital stay was 7.9 days (range 6-10 days). Only minor complications were found, and no mortality was observed. No liver recurrence was detected during mean follow-up of 6 months.
Conclusion. This technique is suitable for patients who are at risk of bleeding becauuse it offers a new method for transfusion-free resection, reducing postoperative complications and shorter long-term survival. Adequate follow-up is necessary to judge its true efficacy, in terms of recurrence and survival.

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