Published online Jul 14, 2013. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v19.i26.4106
Revised: April 26, 2013
Accepted: June 18, 2013
Published online: July 14, 2013
Core tip: The present review shows the lights and shadows of the comparative literature regarding hepatic resection and radiofrequency ablation for hepatocellular carcinoma. Nineteen studies that directly compared these two therapies were found through an extensive literature review; of them, three randomized controlled trial were available for comparison whereas the remaining studies were represented by retrospective observational studies. Results are often conflicting and further randomized controlled trial are warranted; otherwise, retrospective observational studies should include in their analyses statistical approaches aimed at reduce possible confounding sources at a minimum.