Purpose: To evaluate magnetic resonance (MR) imaging-controlled laser-induced thermotherapy (LITT) in the treatment of recurrent head and neck tumors.
Materials and methods: Six patients with recurrent nasopharyngeal tumors (squamous cell carcinoma [n = 4], pleomorphic adenoma [n = 2]) underwent LITT with local anesthesia. A 7-F introducing sheath was inserted into the center of the tumor followed by a specially designed laser emitter. Therapy was monitored on-line with MR thermometry, and the amount of necrosis was estimated with dynamic and static contrast material-enhanced sequences.
Results: All procedures were well tolerated with use of local anesthesia, with no clinically relevant side effects. MR thermometry depicted up to 15-mm-diameter areas of less signal intensity near the laser tip. Coagulative necrosis was achieved in all patients (volume range, 4-28 cm3), and clinical symptoms were reduced in four.
Conclusion: MR imaging-controlled LITT may be a safe, minimally invasive alternative in the treatment of recurrent head and neck tumors.