Local tumor recurrence following hepatic cryoablation: Radiologic-histopathologic correlation in a rabbit model

B. S. Kuszyk, J. K. Boitnott, M. A. Choti, D. A. Bluemke, S. Sheth, C. A. Magee, K. M. Horton, J. Eng, E. K. Fishman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Scopus citations


PURPOSE: To use radiologic-histopathologic correlation in an animal model to distinguish normal postoperative findings from evidence of residual tumor after cryoablation of malignant hepatic tumors. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Hepatic cryoablation was performed in 12 rabbits with VX2 tumors and in two healthy rabbits. Nonenhanced and dynamic contrast material-enhanced computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance (MR) imaging and power and color Doppler flow ultrasonography (US) were performed 7-8 days after cryoablation. Histopathologic findings, were correlated with imaging findings. RESULTS: Twenty tumors of 5-20 mm (mean, 10 mm) and seven areas of normal liver were treated with cryolesions of 11-21 mm (mean, 15 mm). All cryolesions exhibited arterial phase rim enhancement at CT and MR imaging, and 13 (57%) of 23 lesions demonstrated peripheral flow at US because of granulation tissue. There was macroscopic recurrence in 15 (75%) of 20 treated tumors; 14 (93%) appeared as peripheral nodularity with low-grade enhancement. Necrotic tissue did not enhance. Intact vessels extended up to 6 mm inside cryolesion margins and caused focal internal enhancement and Doppler flow. Areas of high signal intensity on T2-weighted MR images correlated with liquefaction necrosis, granulation tissue, and tumor. CONCLUSION: In this animal model, recurrent tumor typically appeared as focal nodules at the cryolesion periphery. Rim and central loci of enhancement, Doppler flow, and increased signal intensity on T2-weighted MR images can be normal findings after hepatic cryoablation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)477-486
Number of pages10
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 1 2000


  • Animals
  • Cryotherapy
  • Liver neoplasms
  • Liver, CT
  • Liver, MR
  • Liver, US
  • Liver, interventional procedures

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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