Cryoablation: Interventional radiologists present results of research on a new
minimally invasive treatment option for advanced cancers that have spread to
NEW ORLEANS, April 14, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ --
-- Minimally invasive cryoablation freezes and kills cancerous tumors that
have spread to the lung, suggests first results of the ECLIPSE trial.
-- Cryoablation was 100 percent effective after three months, researchers
-- While not a cure, cryoablation appears to extend patient survival.
-- Interventional radiologists are doctors who specialize in minimally
invasive targeted treatments. They use X-rays, MRI or other imaging to
guide a catheter inside the body, usually in an artery, to treat at the
source of disease.
Frozen balls of ice can safely kill cancerous tumors that have spread to the
lungs, according to the first prospective multicenter trial of cryoablation. The
results are being presented at the Society of Interventional Radiology's 38th
Annual Scientific Meeting in New Orleans.
"Cryoablation has potential as a treatment for cancer that has spread to the
lungs from other parts of the body and could prolong the lives of patients who
are running out of options," said David A. Woodrum, M.D., Ph.D., an author of
the study and interventional radiologist at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn.
"We may not be able to cure the cancer, but with cryoablation we can at least
slow it down significantly and allow patients to enjoy greater quality of life
longer," he added. Metastatic lung disease is difficult to treat and often
signals a poor prognosis for patients.
In the initial results of the study, called the ECLIPSE trial (Evaluating
Cryoablation of Metastatic Lung/Pleura Tumors in Patients--Safety and Efficacy),
22 subjects with a total of 36 tumors were treated with 27 cryoablation
sessions. Cryoablation was 100 percent effective in killing those tumors at
three-month follow-up. Follow-up at six months on 5 of the 22 patients (23
percent) showed the treated tumors to still be dead. Cryoablation is performed
by an interventional radiologist using a small needle-like probe guided through
a nick in the skin to cancerous tumors inside the lung under medical imaging
guidance. These tumors have spread--or metastasized--to the lung from primary
cancers in other areas of the body. Once in position, the tip of the instrument
is cooled with gas to as low as minus 100 degrees Celsius. The resulting halo of
ice crystals can destroy cancer by interrupting its cellular function,
protecting nearby healthy, delicate lung tissue. Lung cryoablation has been
promising in part due to the low periprocedural morbidity.
"Most of these patients can go home the day after their cryoablation treatment
and resume their normal activities," Woodrum said, noting that researchers plan
to continue to follow patients for up to five years. While cryoablation is being
developed for the treatment of metastatic lung cancer, the future looks brighter
for individuals who once had nowhere else to turn, said Woodrum, who was
assisted in research by Frank Nichols, M.D. and Matthew R. Callstrom, M.D.
More information about the Society of Interventional Radiology, interventional
radiologists and minimally invasive treatments can be found online at
Abstract 33: "Evaluating Cryoablation of Metastatic Lung/Pleura Tumors in
Patients--Safety and Efficacy (ECLIPSE)," T. de Baere, G. Farouil, Institut de
Cancerologie Gustave Roussy, Villejuif Cedex, France; D.A. Woodrum, Mayo Clinic,
Rochester, Minn.; F. Abtin, University of California-Los Angeles, Los Angeles,
Calif.; P. Littrup, Karmanos Cancer Institute, Detroit, Mich., SIR 38th Annual
Scientific Meeting, April 13-18, 2013. This abstract can be found at
About the Society of Interventional Radiology
Interventional radiologists are physicians who specialize in minimally invasive,
targeted treatments. They offer the most in-depth knowledge of the least
invasive treatments available coupled with diagnostic and clinical experience
across all specialties. They use X-ray, MRI and other imaging to advance a
catheter in the body, such as in an artery, to treat at the source of the
disease internally. As the inventors of angioplasty and the catheter-delivered
stent, which were first used in the legs to treat peripheral arterial disease,
interventional radiologists pioneered minimally invasive modern medicine. Today,
interventional oncology is a growing specialty area of interventional radiology.
Interventional radiologists can deliver treatments for cancer directly to the
tumor without significant side effects or damage to nearby normal tissue.
Many conditions that once required surgery can be treated less invasively by
interventional radiologists. Interventional radiology treatments offer less
risk, less pain and less recovery time compared to open surgery. This year, SIR
celebrates 40 years of innovation and advances in interventional radiology.
The Society of Interventional Radiology is holding its 38th Annual Scientific
Meeting April 13-18 at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, New Orleans. The
theme of the meeting is 'IR Reaching Out,' adopted to illustrate the many ways
the Annual Scientific Meeting provides valuable education to attendees with a
broad range of diverse clinical interests and practice settings.
SOURCE Society of Interventional Radiology