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 vaginal tumors. This novel technology focuses beams of ultrasound energy precisely and accurately on targets 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 vaginal tumors to be treated without surgery.
The most common option for treatment of vaginal cancer is surgery, but chemotherapy and radiation therapy may also be used.
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. Focused ultasound also does not require anesthesia.
There is a clinical trial in China evaluating the immune status of the tissue after treatment with focused ultrasound.
A recently completed clinical trial assessed focused ultrasound for treatment of symptomatic (pain or bleeding) recurrent pelvic malignancy when conventional treatment options are not available.
For a full list of vaginal tumor clinical trials, please see here.
Regulatory Approval and Reimbursement
Focused ultrasound treatment for vaginal tumors is not yet approved by regulatory bodies or covered by medical insurance companies.
Imseeh G, Giles SL, Taylor A, Brown MRD, Rivens I, Gordon-Williams R, Ter Haar G, deSouza NM. Feasibility of palliating recurrent gynecological tumors with MRGHIFU: comparison of symptom, quality-of-life, and imaging response in intra and extra-pelvic disease. Int J Hyperthermia. 2021;38(1):623-632. doi: 10.1080/02656736.2021.1904154.
Abel M, Ahmed H, Leen E, Park E, Chen M, Wasan H, Price P, Monzon L, Gedroyc W, Abel P. Ultrasound-guided trans-rectal high-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) for advanced cervical cancer ablation is feasible: a case report. J Ther Ultrasound. 2015 Dec 18;3:21. doi: 10.1186/s40349-015-0043-6. eCollection 2015.
Click here for additional references from PubMed.