Purpose: To evaluate feasibility of using a thermocouple for temperature monitoring during microwave (MW) ablation of metastatic bone disease.
Materials and methods: This retrospective study comprised 16 patients (8 men with mean age 63 y and 8 women with mean age 59 y) with 18 bone metastases treated with MW ablation using a thermocouple between March 2012 and October 2015. The mean maximum tumor size was 29.5 mm. MW ablation power was set between 15 W and 40 W and applied for 1-6 minutes. Thermocouple placements were as follows: epidural space (n = 7 cases), nerve roots (n = 9 cases), pleura (n = 1), and pericardium (n = 1). The procedure was considered technically successful when the MW and the thermocouple probes were accurately placed and thermoablation was initiated. Clinical success was defined as a 50% visual analog scale score decrease at 1 month as assessed by the operators.
Results: Mean MW ablation time was 4.3 minutes with a mean energy of 30 W. Procedural success was 100%. In 16 cases with neural structure monitoring, temperature did not increase > 43°C. In 8 cases, MW ablation had to be discontinued because of temperature reaching 42°C. Efficacy of the procedure in regard to pain was achieved in 17 of 18 ablation sessions at 1 month.
Conclusions: Use of a thermocouple during bone MW ablation is a feasible technique and may be a potentially useful tool to help avoid nontarget ablation surrounding tumors.
Copyright © 2016 SIR. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.