Safety and efficacy of high intensity focused ultrasound ablation therapy for adenomyosis

Acad Radiol. 2009 Nov;16(11):1416-23. doi: 10.1016/j.acra.2009.06.005. Epub 2009 Aug 15.


Rationale and objectives: In patients with adenomyosis, the severity of symptoms correlates roughly with the extent of adenomyosis. Thus, it was hypothesized that the ablation of enough volume of adenomyosis might alleviate symptoms. The aim of this study was to investigate the safety and efficacy of high-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) ablation for the treatment of adenomyosis.

Materials and methods: Phase I HIFU ablation of adenomyosis was performed on 12 patients. Three patients each were treated using four different acoustic intensities (290, 340, 380, and 420 W) step by step. Contrast-enhanced ultrasound was used to evaluate the necrotic region of treated adenomyosis. The efficacy of therapy was evaluated after 3 months of follow-up.

Results: All patients in the four groups tolerated the therapy well, and no severe complications were found during follow-up. After treatment, nonenhanced necrotic regions were shown on contrast-enhanced ultrasound in all treated adenomyosis. The mean volumes of the nonenhanced regions were 72, 75, 68, and 124 cm(3) in the 290-W, 340-W, 380-W, and 420-W groups, respectively. At 3 months after therapy, the mean pain relief in the four groups was 25%, 58.3%, 66.7%, and 83.3%, respectively.

Conclusions: HIFU may be a safe and effective method to treat adenomyosis, and an acoustic intensity of 420 W may be able to produce larger volumes of necrosis and better pain relief.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Endometriosis / diagnostic imaging*
  • Endometriosis / surgery*
  • Female
  • High-Intensity Focused Ultrasound Ablation / methods*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Ultrasonography