Skip to Content

Percutaneous Thermal Ablation

Percutaneous thermal ablation is a procedure that uses an energy source (either heat, cold, or chemical) to destroy cancerous tissue in a target organ. This procedure involves advancing a special type of needle directly into a tumor within the target organ with the assistance of US, CT scan and/or X-ray guidance. The needle is used to deliver an energy source to the tumor to destroy it while minimizing damage in the target organ. This is a minimally invasive procedure that is performed through a very small incision resulting in few side effects and a rapid recovery time.

How to Prepare for Percutaneous Thermal Ablation

  • All patients are seen in consultation with an interventional radiologist, during which you will discuss your medical history, the procedure, recovery and follow up routines.
  • You may be required to get a CT scan or an MRI and some lab work if not already completed prior to your consultation
  • Typically within 1 to 2 weeks of your consultation your ablation procedure will be scheduled.

What to Expect

  • Sedation and pain control are provided by the anesthesia team.
  • An ultrasound or CT scanner is used to help guide the ablation needle into the targeted tumor once you are sedated.
  • Energy is applied to the needle, causing it to either heat or freeze the target tumor, destroying cancer cells.

What to Expect after Percutaneous Thermal Ablation

  • After the procedure most patients are on bed rest for a few hours and then are discharged the same day if medically appropriate.
  • The interventional radiology clinic will provide a follow up call 24 hours after the procedure to check in on your recovery.
  • A clinical follow up will be scheduled for 1-2 weeks after the procedure to go over your recovery and discuss any necessary follow up imaging and or lab tests.
  • All follow up imaging will be arranged in conjunction with your referring oncologist and they will be informed of your treatment progress in interventional radiology.

For More Information

For more information on percutaneous thermal ablation, or to schedule an appointment with an interventional radiologist, please call 847.570.2160.