Dual-Applicator MR Imaging–Guided Microwave Ablation with Real-Time MR Thermometry: Phantom and Porcine Tissue Model Experiments

Liqiang Ren, David A. Woodrum, Krzysztof R. Gorny, Joel P. Felmlee, Christopher P. Favazza, Scott M. Thompson, Aiming Lu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: To investigate the effect of simultaneous use of dual applicators on the image quality of real-time magnetic resonance (MR) thermometry and to characterize the dual-applicator treatment zone pattern during MR imaging–guided microwave ablation (MWA). Materials and Methods: MWA experiments were performed on a 1.5-T MR scanner with 2 commercial microwave systems (902–928 MHz). Phantom experiments were first performed to evaluate the effect of dual-applicator MWA on the image quality of MR. Then, porcine tissue model experiments were conducted with real-time MR thermometry using either a single applicator or dual applicators inserted 2.6, 3.6, and 4.6 cm apart. Fiberoptic thermal probes were used to measure the temperature changes at the tissue surface. Results: Simultaneous use of dual applicators resulted in a decrease in the relative signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) in the MR thermometry images to 55% ± 2.9% when compared with that of a single applicator (86.2% ± 2.0%). Despite the lower SNR, the temperature and ablation zone maps were of adequate quality to allow visualization of the ablation zone(s). The extents of increase in the temperature at the tissue surface using dual applicators (19.7 °C ± 2.6 °C) and a single applicator (18.2 °C ± 3.3 °C) were not significantly different (P = .40). Treatment zones were significantly larger (P < .05) in dual-applicator ablations (29.4 ± 0.4, 39.9 ± 0.6, and 42.6 ± 0.9 cm2 with 2.6-, 3.6-, and 4.6-cm spacing, respectively) at the end of the ablation procedure than in the single-applicator MWA (18.6 ± 0.9 cm2). Conclusions: MR imaging–guided dual-applicator MWA produced larger ablation zones while allowing adequate real-time MR thermometry image quality for monitoring the evolution of the treatment zone.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)46-53.e4
JournalJournal of Vascular and Interventional Radiology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2023

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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