Radiofrequency Ablation for Treatment of Osteoid Osteoma Tumors

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This project analyzes the different parameters involved in the use of radiofrequency ablation in destruction of osteoid osteoma tumors. Osteoid osteomas occur most frequently in the long tubular bones, especially those in the lower extremities. Studies in destruction of these types of tumors are critical because they occur most commonly in people that are in the prime of their life, between the ages of seven and twenty-five. Previous treatments such as surgical tumor removal are painful, costly, and require longer healing times. Radiofrequency ablation promises to destroy the cancerous cells with minimal invasion and loss of healthy tissue at a lower cost and shorter recovery time. Using finite element analysis, we determined the optimal probe placement and size, heating voltage, and duration of treatment. To find these parameters our group utilized FIDAP and GAMBIT to model and simulate physiological conditions during the ablation. We used the energy equation to govern our system simulation and neglected the convective heat transfer because heat loss due to blood flow was negligible compared with that generated by the probe. The electric field generated was modeled as a species concentration by the Laplace equation. This field was the determining factor in heat generation and therefore tumor destruction. Our model was three-dimensional and the radius of the bone was determined so that we could assume a semi-infinite region, in which the outer boundary was held constant at body temperature. Our initial conditions assumed that the tissue was at average body temperature (37 degrees). Our findings suggest that having a two-probe system, each probe with a radius of .0001m, held at 11 mV for 60 seconds is the most efficient, less invasive method. Our study also indicated that the number of probes used was insignificant and that the specific heat, the tissue density, electrical conductivity, and thermal conductivity were of less importance to this process.

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