Korean J Radiol.  2011 Oct;12(5):525-540. 10.3348/kjr.2011.12.5.525.

Thermal Ablation for Benign Thyroid Nodules: Radiofrequency and Laser

  • 1Department of Radiology and Research Institute of Radiology, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Asan Medical Center, Seoul 138-736, Korea. radbaek@naver.com
  • 2Endocrinology Division & Thyroid Disease Center, Arcispedale Santa Maria Nuova 42123, Reggio Emilia, Italy.
  • 3Diagnostic Imaging and Interventional Radiology Department, Ospedale Regina Apostolorum 00041, Albano Laziale-Rome, Italy.
  • 4Department of Radiology and Center for Imaging Science, Samsung Medical Center, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul 135-710, Korea.
  • 5Department of Radiology, Human Medical Imaging and Intervention Center, Seoul 137-902, Korea.


Although ethanol ablation has been successfully used to treat cystic thyroid nodules, this procedure is less effective when the thyroid nodules are solid. Radiofrequency (RF) ablation, a newer procedure used to treat malignant liver tumors, has been valuable in the treatment of benign thyroid nodules regardless of the extent of the solid component. This article reviews the basic physics, techniques, applications, results, and complications of thyroid RF ablation, in comparison to laser ablation.


Radiofrequency ablation; Thyroid nodule; Ultrasonography; Ethanol ablation; Laser ablation

MeSH Terms

*Catheter Ablation/methods
*Laser Therapy/methods
Thyroid Nodule/*surgery/ultrasonography
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