Coupled field analysis of heat flow in the near field of a microwave applicator for tumor ablation

Electromagn Biol Med. 2006;25(1):29-43. doi: 10.1080/15368370600572953.


Microwave tumor ablation (MTA) offers a new approach for the treatment of hepatic neoplastic disease. Reliable and accurate information regarding the heat distribution inside biological tissue subjected to microwave thermal ablation is important for the efficient design of microwave applicators and for optimizing experiments, which aim to assess the effects of therapeutic treatments. Currently there are a variety of computational methods based on different vascular structures in tissue, which aim to model heat distribution during ablation. This paper presents results obtained from two such computational models for temperature distributions produced by a clinical 2.45 GHz MTA applicator immersed in unperfused ex vivo bovine liver, and compares them with measured results from a corresponding ex vivo experiment. The computational methods used to model the temperature distribution in tissue caused by the insertion of a 5.6 mm diameter "wandlike" microwave applicator are the Green's function method and the finite element method (FEM), both of which provide solutions of the heat diffusion partial differential equation. The results obtained from the coupled field simulations are shown to be in good agreement with a simplified analysis based on the bio-heat equation and with ex vivo measurements of the heat distribution produced by the clinical MTA applicator.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Catheter Ablation / methods*
  • Cattle
  • Hot Temperature / therapeutic use*
  • Liver Neoplasms / radiotherapy
  • Microwaves / therapeutic use*
  • Models, Biological
  • Neoplasms / radiotherapy*