Laparoscopic microwave thermal ablation for late recurrence of local hepatocellular carcinoma after liver transplant: case report

Prog Transplant. 2014 Jun;24(2):142-5. doi: 10.7182/pit2014632.


Liver transplant is the preferred treatment for hepatocellular carcinoma in patients with cirrhosis, as both neoplastic and cirrhotic liver tissue can be removed. Treatment of recurring neoplasms is a difficult issue, especially in long-term survivors of liver transplant. No consensus has been reached on the treatment of recurrent hepatocellular carcinoma. Although patients with extrahepatic metastases are generally not candidates for local therapy, successful multimodal salvage therapy including resection or ablation can be achieved in liver transplant recipients with local recurrence of hepatocellular carcinoma. Microwave ablation is safe and effective for treating unresectable hepatocellular carcinoma, achieving excellent results in local disease down-staging or as a "bridge" to liver transplant, with no significant differences in local recurrence and complications compared with the more commonly used radiofrequency ablation. A patient with local recurrence of hepatocellular carcinoma 36 months after liver transplant for multifocal hepatocellular carcinoma and cirrhosis due to hepatitis C was successfully treated with laparoscopic microwave ablation without any postoperative complications. The patient is disease free 24 months after microwave ablation.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Ablation Techniques*
  • Carcinoma, Hepatocellular / therapy*
  • Humans
  • Laparoscopy
  • Liver Neoplasms / therapy*
  • Liver Transplantation*
  • Male
  • Microwaves / therapeutic use*
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local / therapy*