HIFU for palliative treatment of pancreatic cancer

Tatiana D. Khokhlova, Joo Ha Hwang


High intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) is a novel non-invasive modality for ablation of various solid tumors including uterine broids, prostate cancer, hepatic, renal, breast and pancreatic tumors. HIFU therapy utilizes mechanical energy in the form of a powerful ultrasound wave that is focused inside the body to induce thermal and/or mechanical eects in tissue. Multiple preclinical and non-randomized clinical trials have been performed to evaluate the safety and ecacy of HIFU for palliative treatment of pancreatic tumors. Substantial tumor-related pain reduction was achieved in most cases aer HIFU treatment, and no signicant side-effects were observed. This review provides a description of dierent physical mechanisms underlying HIFU therapy, summarizes the clinical experience obtained to date in HIFU treatment of pancreatic tumors, and discusses the challenges, limitations and new approaches in this modality.