Bone Tumors

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Focused Ultrasound Therapy

Focused ultrasound is a rapidly evolving, 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.

How it Works
Where the beams converge, focused 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 – such as surgical wound healing or infection – at a lower cost. It can reach the desired target without damaging surrounding tissue and is repeatable, if necessary.

Clinical Trials

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 pediatric and young adult study underway in Washington, DC that involves 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 Washington, DC, treating osteoid osteoma.

There is a multisite trial in Europe treating patients with bone metastasis comparing focused ultrasound and radiotherapy (FURTHER).

There is a clinical trial in France treating bone metastatic lesions and osteoid osteoma.

There is a clinical trial in Canada treating patients with painful skeletal metastatic lesion with focused ultrasound.  

See a full list of bone tumor clinical trials > 

See a list of treatment sites >
See a list of clinical trials sites >
See a list of laboratory research sites >

Regulatory Approval and Reimbursement

Bone tumor treatment is approved in Europe, Russia, and China. It is not approved in the United States.

Notable Papers

Napoli A, De Maio A, Alfieri G, Gasperini C, Scipione R, Campanacci L, Siepe G, De Felice F, Siniscalchi B, Chiurchioni L, Tombolini V, Donati DM, Morganti AG, Ghanouni P, Catalano C, Bazzocchi A. Focused Ultrasound and External Beam Radiation Therapy for Painful Bone Metastases: A Phase II Clinical Trial. Radiology. 2023 Apr;307(2):e211857. doi: 10.1148/radiol.211857. Epub 2023 Jan 3.

Zoccali C, Novello M, Arrigoni F, Scotto di Uccio A, Attala D, Ferraresi V. Osteoblastoma: When the Treatment Is Not Minimally Invasive, an Overview. J Clin Med. 2021 Oct 10;10(20):4645. doi: 10.3390/jcm10204645.

Agnese V, Costa V, Scoarughi GL, Corso C, Carina V, De Luca A, Bellavia D, Raimondi L, Pagani S, Midiri M, Stassi G, Alessandro R, Fini M, Barbato G, Giavaresi G. Focused Ultrasound Effects on Osteosarcoma Cell Lines. Biomed Res Int. 2019 May 19;2019:6082304. doi: 10.1155/2019/6082304. eCollection 2019.

Guillemin PC, Gui L, Lorton O, Zilli T, Crowe LA, Desgranges S, Montet X, Terraz S, Miralbell R, Salomir R, Boudabbous S. Mild hyperthermia by MR-guided focused ultrasound in an ex vivo model of osteolytic bone tumour: optimization of the spatio-temporal control of the delivered temperature. J Transl Med. 2019 Oct 24;17(1):350. doi: 10.1186/s12967-019-2094-x

Arrigoni F, Bruno F, Palumbo P, Zugaro L, Zoccali C, Barile A, Masciocchi C. Magnetic resonance-guided focused ultrasound surgery treatment of non-spinal intra-articular osteoblastoma: feasibility, safety, and outcomes in a single-center retrospective analysis. Int J Hyperthermia. 2019;36(1):768-775. doi: 10.1080/02656736.2019.1639833.

Bitton RR, Webb TD, Pauly KB, Ghanouni P. Prolonged Heating in Nontargeted Tissue During MR-guided Focused Ultrasound of Bone Tumors. J Magn Reson Imaging. 2019 Apr 5. doi: 10.1002/jmri.26726. 

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.

International Approval
Clinical Trials