Types of Tumor Ablation
Research and Education
UW Health's radiology department performs microwave ablation for the treatment of tumors.
Like radiofrequency ablation, microwave ablation may be performed as an open, laparoscopic or percutaneous procedure.
During microwave ablation, a tumor is localized using image guidance and a single microwave antenna or several antennae are inserted through the skin and into the tumor. The antennae "ablate" tumors by directing a blast of microwave energy (an electromagnetic wave), which effectively destroys the tumor by generating intense heat.
Microwave ablation is a young approach to tumor ablation, but early research suggestions the following advantages:
- Microwaves have a broad field of power density, which means a larger zone of heat distribution and a more complete ablation
- The microwaves are not hindered by damaged tissue, which results in higher and more effective ablation temperatures