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World J Gastroenterol. Nov 21, 2013; 19(43): 7494-7499
Published online Nov 21, 2013. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v19.i43.7494
High intensity focused ultrasound, liver disease and bridging therapy
Luigi Mearini
Luigi Mearini, Deparment of Urology, University of Perugia, Azienda Ospedaliera di Perugia, 06100 Perugia, Italy
Author contributions: Mearini L collected the materials and wrote the manuscript.
Correspondence to: Luigi Mearini, MD, Urologist-Oncologist, Deparment of Urology, University of Perugia, Azienda Ospedaliera di Perugia, Sant’Andrea delle Fratte, 06100 Perugia, Italy.
Telephone: +39-338-2116845  Fax: +39-75-5784416
Received: August 7, 2013
Revised: September 10, 2013
Accepted: September 16, 2013
Published online: November 21, 2013
Core Tip

Core tip: High-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) is a non-invasive modality used to destroy tissue. It has been used to treat unresectable advanced stages of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and liver metastases. In some HCC cases, liver transplantation has become one of the best treatments because it removes the tumour and the underlying liver disease such as cirrhosis. The so-called “bridging therapy” has the aim of controlling disease burden for patients who are on the organ transplant waiting list. Here, we discuss various treatment options including transarterial chemoembolisation and radiofrequency ablation, and we examine the utility of HIFU as a safe and effective method of bridging therapy that can reduce the dropout rate of patients who are on the liver transplant waiting list.