Optimization of an Endoscopic Radiofrequency Ablation Electrode

[+] Author and Article Information
Bradley W. Hanks

ASME Student Member, Pennsylvania State University, 314 Leonhard Building, University Park, PA 16802

Mary I Frecker

ASME Fellow, Pennsylvania State University, 127 Reber Building, University Park, PA 16802

Matthew Moyer

Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Penn State Hershey Medical Center, Penn State Cancer Institute, Hershey, PA 17033

1Corresponding author.

ASME doi:10.1115/1.4040184 History: Received August 14, 2017; Revised April 17, 2018


Radiofrequency ablation (RFA) is an increasingly used, minimally invasive, cancer treatment modality for patients who are unwilling or unable to undergo a major resective surgery. There is a need for RFA electrodes that generate thermal ablation zones that closely match the geometry of typical tumors, especially for endoscopic ultrasound-guided (EUS) RFA. In this paper, the procedure for optimization of an RFA electrode is presented. First, a novel compliant electrode design is proposed. Next, a thermal ablation model is developed to predict the ablation zone produced by an RFA electrode in biological tissue. Then, a multi-objective genetic algorithm is used to optimize two cases of the electrode geometry to match the region of destructed tissue to a spherical tumor of a specified diameter. This optimization procedure is then applied to EUS-RFA ablation of pancreatic tissue. For a target 2.5cm spherical tumor, the optimal design parameters of the compliant electrode design are found for two cases. Case 1 and Case 2 optimal solutions filled 70.9% and 87.0% of the target volume as compared to only 25.1% for a standard straight electrode. The results of the optimization demonstrate how computational models combined with optimization can be used for systematic design of ablation electrodes. The optimization procedure may be applied to RFA of various tissue types for systematic design of electrodes for a specific target shape.

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