Evaluation of tissue shrinkage after CT-guided microwave ablation in patients with liver malignancies using Jacobian determinant


To assess short-term tissue shrinkage in patients with liver malignancies undergoing computed tomography (CT)-guided microwave ablation (MWA) using Jacobian determinant (JD).

Materials and methods

Twenty-nine patients with 29 hepatic malignancies (primary n = 24; metastases n = 5; median tumor diameter 18 mm) referred to CT-guided MWA (single position; 10 min, 100 W) were included in this retrospective IRB-approved study, after exclusion of five patients. Following segmentation of livers and tumors on pre-interventional images, segmentations were registered on post-interventional images. JD mapping was applied to quantify voxelwise tissue volume changes after MWA. Percentual volume changes were evaluated in the ablated tumor, a 5-cm tumor perimeter and in the whole liver and compared in different clinical conditions (tumor entity: primary vs. secondary; tumor location: subcapsular vs. non-subcapsular; tumor volume: >/<6 ml: cirrhosis: yes vs. no; prior chemotherapy: yes vs. no using Shapiro-Wilk, χ2 and Wilcoxon rank sum tests, respectively (with p < 0.05 deemed significant).


Tissue volume change was 0.6% in the ablated tumor, 1.6% in the 5-cm perimeter and 0.3% in the whole liver. Shrinkage in the ablated tumor was pronounced in non-subcapsular located tumors, whereas tissue expansion was noted in subcapsular tumors (median -3.5 vs. 1.1%; p = 0.0195). Shrinkage in the whole liver was higher in tumor volumes >6ml, compared with smaller tumors, in which tissue expansion was noted (median -1.0 vs. 2.5%; p = 0.002). Other clinical conditions had no significant influence on the extent of tissue shrinkage (p > 0.05).


3D Jacobian analysis shows that hepatic tissue deformation following MWA is most pronounced in a 5-cm area surrounding the treated tumor. Tumor location and tumor volume may have an impact on the extent of tissue shrinkage which may affect estimation of the safety margin.


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