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A Journal on Nephrology and Urology

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Minerva Urologica e Nefrologica 2005 December;57(4):261-9

language: English

Renal tumor radiofrequency ablation

Slabaugh T. K., Ogan K.

Department of Urology Emory University Medical Center, Atlanta, GA, USA


Nephron sparing surgery has become the gold standard for the treatment of small (< 4 cm) renal tumors. More recently, renal tumor ablation, destroying renal tumors with energy based modalities and leaving the tissue in situ, has gained popularity. Radiofrequency ablation (RFA) utilizes heat energy to cause cellular destruction. RFA can be applied laparoscopically, percutaneously, and as an adjunct with partial nephrectomy. A comprehensive MEDLINE search of the English literature from 1990 to present was performed to identify articles on renal RFA. RFA is an effective minimally invasive treatment alternative for small renal masses in patients with significant comorbidities that preclude extirpative surgery. Limited follow up from a number of series demonstrate a success rate of 92%. RFA has proven to be an effective ablative therapy in a number of organ systems. Over the past decade it has been applied to the treatment of small renal tumors. The short-term efficacy and minimum morbidity of RF thermal therapy for renal tumors has been encouraging. RFA provides a versatile tool to add to the urologist’s armamentarium in the minimally invasive treatment of renal cancer.

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