Institut Gustave-Roussy, 39, rue Camille-Desmoulins, 94805 Villejuif, France
Radiofrequency current can be locally delivered through electrode-needle inserted in the tumors and allows local destruction of tissues, up to a volume of 4 to 5 cm in diameter with one application. Such destruction guided with medical imaging proved a high local efficacy over 90 % for tumors less than 25 mm in the liver, lung, and kidney. For larger tumors, efficiency is lower but new technical development might improve these results. Additionally RF has been efficiently used to palliate pain due to osteoïd osteomas and malignant bone metastases with a high success rate and low complication rate. Radiofrequency, although very efficient in local tumor control, has neither proven to prolong survival or to be equivalent to surgery in randomized trial, even if some retrospective studies have done so. Further studies are needed to evaluate the exact benefit of this promising technique.