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Symptomatic-enlarging hepatic hemangiomas are effectively treated by percutaneous ultrasonography-guided radiofrequency ablation.

BACKGROUND & AIMS: We aimed to evaluate the feasibility, efficacy, and safety of percutaneous ultrasonography-guided radiofrequency ablation for the management of symptomatic-enlarging hepatic hemangiomas.

METHODS: Twenty-four patients (5 male and 19 female, with mean age of 49.5±2.2) with 25 hemangiomas over 4 cm underwent percutaneous RFA due to either the presence of symptoms or the enlargement of hemangioma compared with previous imaging studies.

RESULTS: The mean diameter of hemangioma was 7.2±0.7 cm (4.0-15.0 cm) with 16 hemangiomas in right and 9 hemangiomas in left lobe. Twenty-three hemangiomas (92.0%) were successfully treated by radiofrequency ablation. The mean diameter of hemangiomas was decreased to 4.5±2.4 cm (p<0.001) in serial follow-up CT scans over mean period of 23±3.8 months (23-114 months). Symptoms related to hemangioma disappeared without enlargement of hemangiomas in all successfully treated patients. There were 14 adverse events in 10 patients including abdominal pain, indirect hyperbilirubinemia (>3.0 mg/dl), fever (38.3°C), anemia (<10 g/dl), and ascites, which were successfully managed by conservative treatment.

CONCLUSIONS: Percutaneous ultrasonography-guided radiofrequency ablation is an effective, minimally invasive, and safe procedure for the management of symptomatic-enlarging hepatic hemangioma.

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