Microwave thermal ablation using CT-scanner for predicting the variation of ablated region over time: advantages and limitations

Lidia Strigari, Silvia Minosse, Daniela D'Alessio, Laura Farina, Marta Cavagnaro, Bartolomeo Cassano, Rosanna Pinto, Giulio Vallati, Vanni Lopresto

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study aims at investigating in real-time the structural and dynamical changes occurring in an ex-vivo tissue during a microwave thermal ablation (MTA) treatment. The proposed set-up was based on ex vivo liver tissue inserted in a specific box, in which 3 fibre-optic (FO) temperature probes were introduced to measure the temperature increase over time. Computed Tomography (CT) imaging technique was exploited to experimentally study in real-time the Hounsfield Units (HU) modification occurring during MTA. The collected image data were processed with a dedicated MATLAB tool, developed to analyse the FO positions and HU modifications from the CT images acquired over time before and during the ablation procedures. The radial position of a FO temperature probe (rFO) and the value of HU in the region of interest (ROI) containing the probe (HUo), along with the corresponding value of HU in the contralateral ROI with respect to the MTA antenna applicator (HUc), were determined and registered over time during and after the MTA procedure. Six experiments were conducted to confirm results. The correlation between the logarithm of temperature and the above listed predictors was investigated using univariate and multivariate analysis. At the multivariate analysis, the time, rFO and HUc resulted significant predictive factors of measured temperature. The correlation between predicted and measured temperatures was 0.928 (p <0.001). The developed tool allows identifying and registering the image-based parameters useful for predicting the temperature variation over time in each investigated voxel by taking into consideration the HU variation.

Original languageEnglish
JournalPhysics in Medicine and Biology
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - Apr 17 2019


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