Radiofrequency or microwave ablation for treatment of the lung tumors?

In a prospective multi-centre randomized trial by Machi et al published in the Journal Medical Oncology (2017 May 10.1007/s12032-017-0946-x), radiofrequency ablation (RFA) and microwave ablation (MWA) are both found to be excellent in terms of efficacy and safety while MWA produced less intraprocedural pain and a more significant reduction in tumor mass.

The Lung Microwave Radiofrequency RAandomized trial (LUMIRA) trial evaluated the effectiveness, and sought to define precisely the application field for radiofrequency (RFA) and microwave ablation (MWA) in fifty-two patients in stage IV lung disease randomized to either MWA or RFA. 

The study finds that tumor size was significantly reduced in the RFA group, only between 6 and 12 months and in the MWA group between 6 and 12 months and between pre-therapy and 12 months. Survival time showed no significant differences between the two groups. Pain level in the MWA group was significantly less than in RFA group.

In lung tumor treatments, the study finds both RFA and MWA to be excellent in terms of efficacy and safety. Nevertheless, MWA produced less intraprocedural pain and a significant reduction in tumor mass compared to RFA therapy.