According to an abstract presented at the Society of Interventional Radiology's 37th Annual Scientific Meeting in San Francisco, patients with metastatic breast cancer may have one more treatment option to stop metastasis: percutaneous cryoablation.
Percutaneous cryoablation is an interventional radiology procedure in which doctors insert tiny probes with a catheter into the skin and guide them to the tumors. Pressurized argon gas is pumped into the tumor, creating "a ball of ice, effectively killing the cancerous tissue." Helium gas is used to help release the needle. Medical imaging like ultrasound or CT is used to guide the procedure.
Percutaneous cryoablation offers a third line of therapy to zap small, metastatic tumors throughout the body that aren't knocked out by more chemotherapy or radiation, and it causes significantly less damage to surrounding tissues and causes fewer side effects than the current alternatives, say researchers from both the University of Michigan and the University of California.
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