Focused Ultrasound Therapy
Focused ultrasound is an early-stage, noninvasive, therapeutic technology with the potential to improve the quality of life and decrease the cost of care for patients with bone tumors. This novel technology focuses beams of ultrasound energy precisely and accurately on targets deep in the body without damaging surrounding normal tissue. Where the beams converge, the ultrasound produces precise ablation (thermal destruction of tissue) enabling bone tumors to be treated without surgery. Note: there are some specific bone tumors that have their own entry into our website. For osteoid osteoma, multiple myeloma, sacral chordoma, and bone metastases, please see those separate listings.
The primary options for treatment of bone tumors include invasive surgery.
For certain patients, focused ultrasound could provide a noninvasive alternative to surgery with less risk of complications and lower cost.
- Focused ultrasound is noninvasive, so it does not carry added concerns like surgical wound healing or infection.
- Focused ultrasound can reach the desired target without damaging surrounding tissue.
- It can be repeated, if necessary.
There is a multi-site clinical trial comparing the treatment of osteoid osteoma with magnetic resonance guided focused ultrasound vs. radiofrequency ablation.
There is a phase IV, post approval clinical trial at many centers in the US that is looking at the pain palliation when magnetic resonance guided focused ultrasound is used to treat bone metastasis.
There are two pediatric and young adult studies underway in Washington, DC that involve the use of FUS in combination with a thermally sensitive form of liposomal doxorubicin on a variety of solid tumors.
There is a clinical trial in Taipei, comparing magnetic resonance guided focused ultrasound and external beam radiation for the treatment for bone metastasis.
There is a clinical trial in Surrey, United Kingdom assessing pain palliation when magnetic resonance guided focused ultrasound is used for treatment of bone metastasis.
Regulatory Approval and Reimbursement
Bone tumor treatment is approved in Europe, Russia, and China. It is not approved in the United States.
Menikou G, Yiallouras C, Yiannakou M, Damianou C. MRI-guided focused ultrasound robotic system for the treatment of bone cancer. Int J Med Robot. 2016 Jul 15. doi: 10.1002/rcs.1753.
Chen W, Zhu H, Zhang L, Li K, Su H, Jin C, Zhou K, Bai J, Wu F, Wang Z. Primary bone malignancy: effective treatment with high-intensity focused ultrasound ablation. Radiology. 2010 Jun;255(3):967-78. doi: 10.1148/radiol.10090374.
Click here for additional references from PubMed.