What is Cancer Ablation?

Most cancers are diagnosed and characterised today by radiological scan; usually ultrasound, CT or MR scan. Some patients have already had a cancer removed and are under surveillance when a smaller secondary tumour is detected. All these scans are helping to drive down the size of cancers at the time of detection and this is contributing significantly to an improved outlook for patients.

When tumours are confirmed at this smaller size- usually less than 3-4cm - traditional, major surgery to remove them may be problematic for the surgeon and/or a major undertaking for the patient. In recent years a number of image-guided technologies have been developed to target and destroy these tumours and a margin of normal tissue around them, just as would be excised by traditional surgery. The body then resorbs the dead tissue and heals with only minor scarring to the underlying organ.

Cancer Ablation UK specialists aim to be the best in Europe. Our doctors are known worldwide as the pioneers and torch bearers of this technology. They lecture around the world and are extensively published.  The most up-to-date ablative technologies, including microwave and cryoablation can be found right here. 

Whilst the patient is asleep under general anaesthetic the tumour is carefully targeted with needle-like probes through the skin and then heated or cooled to surgical destruction. This approach significantly reduces invasive trauma to the patient and the potential for complications, getting the patient back to normal day-to-day living as soon as possible.

After a few weeks, a check scan is performed and reviewed with the patient to confirm that the treatment is complete. Most patients then return to their normal cancer surveillance, as required after any surgical operation, and are in a good position to return to any additional treatment, such as chemotherapy, should that be necessary.

At CAUK we are happy to discuss whether image-guided ablation is appropriate in your case and will advise what is in your best interests in conjunction with your own surgeon or oncologist.

Benefits of Cancer Ablation

  • Minimally Invasive
  • Return to work quicker than laparoscopic techniques
  • Short hospital stay (day case or 24 hours)
  • Reduced pain
  • Preserves normal tissue better than laparoscopic techniques