New Technique For Patients With Spinal Tumours

Plasma-mediated radiofrequency
soothes spinal tumour treatment
© Picture Disk

Wade Wong, D.O.F.A.C.R, professor of radiology at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) School of Medicine, and San Diego clinician Bassem Georgy, M.D., partially removed spinal tumours from 28 patients before repairing the spine with vertebroplasty – a procedure to cement and stabilise damaged vertebrae. He used a technology that utilises plasma-mediated radiofrequency energy combined with saline solution to gently and precisely remove soft tissue at low temperature – minimising damage to healthy tissue.

“This image-guided procedure guarantees ultimate accuracy,” said Wong. It enables us to provide pain relief and improved mobility to patients while minimising risks that have traditionally limited treatment options for cancer patients.”

Wong removed the tumour prior to vertebroplasty on 28 patients using the plasma-mediated procedure. Following the partial removal of the tumour, bone cement was injected into the cavity created by the process in order to stabilise the fractured bone fragments. The researchers report that all 28 patients treated in the study experienced decreased pain and improved function.

Using the process doesn’t preclude other treatments, such as chemo or radiation therapy. Though the process doesn’t cure the cancer, it can add to the quality of life for the patient. “Even in patients with a malignancy, it doesn’t mean it’s the end of their life. This procedure allows them to resume activities, like walking or even rollerblading, that they enjoyed before,” said Wong, adding, “Quality of life is what’s key.”; Source: University of California, San Diego