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Medline ® Abstract for Reference 56

of 'The role of local therapies in metastatic breast cancer'

Radiofrequency ablation of metastatic lesions from breast cancer.
Bortolotto C, Macchi S, Veronese L, Dore R, Draghi F, Rossi S
J Ultrasound. 2012 Sep;15(3):199-205. Epub 2012 Jun 27.
INTRODUCTION: Breast cancer (BC) is the most common malignancy in women. Various studies [5,6]have shown that surgical resection of single liver or lung metastases in patients with metastases from BC increases survival. Radiofrequency ablation (RFA) can be an alternative to resection in some patients when resection is not feasible.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: From January 2002 to December 2008, 491 patients with liver metastases underwent US-guided percutaneous RFA. Of these patients 5 (5/491; 1%) had BC. In the same period, 32 patients with pulmonary metastases underwent CT-guided RFA. Of these patients 3 (3/32; 9%) had BC. Mean age was 61.3 years. All patients were postmenopausal and receiving polychemotherapy according to international guidelines. Inclusion criteria for RFA treatment of metastases from BC applied are identical or in some cases more restrictive than those reported in the literature.
RESULTS: There were no deaths or severe complications and no treatment failures. Disease free and overall median survival were respectively 7.65 and 25.7 months after US-guided RFA and 13.4 and 34.8 months after CT-guided RFA. During follow-up (mean follow-up 26 months, range 4-63 months) 5/8 (62.5%) patients exhibited recurrence: 3/5 (60%) had local recurrence and 2/5 (40%) had non-local recurrence; 4/5 patients with recurrence were re-treated.
DISCUSSION: The authors' experience confirms that RFA is an effective, safe and repeatable technique in the treatment of metastases from BC. Metastatic recurrence rate confirms that metastatic BC is a disease which requires a multidisciplinary approach and that the role of chemotherapy is indisputable. Effects on survival are promising but further confirmation is needed through prospective randomized studies.