High intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) for Renal Cancer

High intensity focused ultrasound scanner

Renal cancer is the eighth most commonly occurring cancer in the UK, with over 10,000 new diagnoses and 4,200 deaths every year.

Surgery is the gold standard for renal cancer, but is associated with higher risks in the elderly and in some patients where the risks might outweigh the benefits of surgery.

High intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) treatment has been used in the treatment of patients with renal cancer. The primary advantage of HIFU treatment is that it is completely non-invasive, leading to an associated reduction in mortality, morbidity, hospital stay, cost and improved quality of life for cancer patients.

High frequency sound waves are concentrated on tissues within the body, such as a tumour, and those tissues heat up and die. HIFU can pass through the outside normal tissue and only reaches the concentrated level at the target tumour, thus it requires no open surgery.

It is anticipated that this study will lead to a novel non-invasive approach to treat patients with renal cancer, which is of particular interest in patients of high surgical risk.