Cryosurgery of close or positive margins after hepatic resection for primary and metastatic hepatobiliary malignancies

Perry Shen, Aaron Hoffman, Russell Howerton, Brian W. Loggie

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Obtaining a one-centimeter negative margin is an important factor in preventing disease recurrence after surgery for hepatic tumors. Cryotherapy of the resected edge has been used to achieve optimal margin clearance in cases in which the alternative would be an extended high-risk liver resection. The effect of this technique on margin recurrence was examined. Between 1994 and 2001 a total of 56 patients underwent cryosurgery with or without resection for primary and metastatic hepatobiliary malignancies. A 5-cm cryotherapy lollipop probe was used to ablate surgical margins less than one centimeter in 13 of these patients. There were seven colorectal metastases, three hepatocellular carcinomas, and three gallbladder carcinomas. The median size of the colorectal and hepatocellular lesions was 3 cm (range 2-14 cm), and all gallbladder primaries were T2 tumors. All tumors except three were located centrally in the liver requiring cryoablation of margins at segments 4, 5, and 8. Most patients had one site frozen (n = 9) with a median target temperature of -190°C and a median of two freeze-thaw cycles. Final pathological analysis of the resected specimens revealed nine close (

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)695-703
Number of pages9
JournalAmerican Surgeon
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2002
Externally publishedYes


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Surgery

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