Surgical treatment of giant liver hemangiomas by enucleation using an ultrasonically activated device (USAD)

Hepatogastroenterology. 2009 Jan-Feb;56(89):236-9.


Hemangioma is the most frequent focal liver lesion. It affects mainly women and may cause symptoms such as abdominal pain, mass, and early satiety, or complications such as heart failure or coagulopathy (Kasabach-Merrit syndrome). Although, surgical resection is the only curative treatment for symptomatic giant hemangiomas, the best surgical technique (formal liver resection or enucleation) is still debated. Between January 2000 and April 2006 we treated 12 giant symptomatic hemangioma. Of these, 4 anterior and superficially located in the liver were treated by enucleation and they are discussed in this paper. The operative technique is described. Detailed pathologic examination has demonstrated an interface between hemangiomas and the normal liver tissue that allowed the enucleation. The dissection in the plane between the tumor and the adjacent normal liver tissue has been facilitated by the use of an ultrasonically activated device (USAD). Median operative blood loss was 90 ml (range, 50 to 190 ml), and no transfusion were used. The procedure described allowed a safe enucleation of giant hemangiomas with a reduced blood loss and the preservation of virtually all normal hepatic parenchyma.

MeSH terms

  • Hemangioma, Cavernous / surgery*
  • Humans
  • Liver Neoplasms / surgery*
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Ultrasonic Therapy*