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Liver Cancer Treatments: Radiofrequency ablation (RFA)

for Veterans and the Public

Radiofrequency ablation (RFA)

With this technique, surgeons or interventional radiologists place metal wires directly into a tumor and super-heat it, killing the cancer cells. This may be done through an operation in the abdomen where the liver can be examined directly, or it may be done through the skin.

This form of treatment can kill either small or medium-size liver tumors (often, up to 5 centimeters in size). This treatment can cause stress to the liver, and sometimes patients are kept in the hospital for a day or longer after RFA for observation.