Modelling the Liver RF Thermal Lesions

S. Rossi, M. Gallati, G. Braschi, and M. Raboni (Italy)


biomechanics modelling. Radio Frequency (RF), liver thermal ablation, numerical simulation


The Radio Frequency (RF) thermal ablation is a clinical practice introduced first to treat the liver tumours and later extended to other several organ diseases. It is based on the heat deposition in the region to be necrotized, by joule effect, induced through a suitably applied RF electrical field. The procedure finds the main limits in the maximum volume that can be ablated, as the RF field is interrupted when the boiling of the tissue water occurs. The numerical simulation of the phenomenon is useful with the aim of improving the treatment performance: that is how to widen the maximum tractable volume with different strategies and devices. Up to now only the first stage of the phenomenon (tissue warming) has been simulated in the technical literature, while the vaporization phase was disregarded. An improved model of the whole phenomenon, suggested by experimental evidence, is presented and discussed. Its performance is proved simulating the outcome of a first experiment, also used in visualizing the phenomenon main features. It is expected that the model can deal with extended application and allow getting possible improvement of the RF procedure.

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