Researchers from the National Cheng Kung University in Taiwan, in conjunction with engineers at the Metal Industries Research & Development Centre, are developing an alternative method of treating hepatocellular carcinoma and bile duct carcinoma. Typically, treating patients with these types of cancers requires a laparotomy, resulting in a large wound and long recovery times. In recent years, radio-frequency ablation has mitigated some of the issues with laparotomies, but the equipment remains expensive and cumbersome.
The Electromagnetic Thermo Therapeutic Apparatus and System might become a new way of treating hepatoma patients. Using a series of electromagnetically-activated needles, surgeons can target carcinomas in patients’ midsections without creating large wounds common with laparotomies. The needles have two distinct sections: one with a dormant stainless steel head and neck, and one with an electromagnetically-inducible tip that can be charged by placing an induction ring around the needle or needle array. The creators of this technology hope it will represent a viable and cost-effective alternative to RFA treatments and certain surgical procedures.