Histotripsy is a noninvasively focused ultrasound wave used to mechanically destroy target tissue with millimeter precision. The relatively new technique is currently being used in a human liver cancer trial in the United States and Europe.
In many clinical situations, the entirety of a cancerous tumor cannot be targeted directly in treatments for reasons that include the mass’ size, location or stage. To investigate the effects of partially destroying tumors with sound, this latest study targeted only a portion of each mass, leaving behind a viable intact tumor. It also allowed the team, including researchers at Michigan Medicine and the Ann Arbor VA Hospital, to show the approach’s effectiveness under less than optimal conditions.
Histotripsy is a promising option that can overcome the limitations of currently available ablation modalities and provide safe and effective noninvasive liver tumor ablation.