Comparative outcomes of radio frequency ablation versus partial nephrectomy for T1 renal tumors: a systematic review

Xiyi Wei, Xiaohan Ren, Yichao Ding, Hongye Wang, Yunxin Li, Xiao Li, Yang Gao


Background: The role of radio frequency ablation (RFA) in small renal tumors remains controversial. This systematic review was performed to compare clinical outcomes of RFA versus partial nephrectomy (PN) for the treatment of T1 renal tumors.
Methods: A total of 11 studies including 2,397 patients were analyzed in this systematic review after searching the databases of PubMed, EMBASE and Web of Science. P value and odds ratio (OR)/hazard ratio (HR) with 95% confidence interval (CI) were used to evaluate the strength of the association.
Results: A total of six studies (2,056 patients) provided either survival curves or HR and its 95% CI, demonstrating that the majority of the patients with RFA treatment tended to exhibit a similar long-term survival rate to those with PN treatment. In addition, according to four studies, no differences were found in the overall rate of complications between the two groups. Furthermore, there were significant differences in glomerular filtration rate (GFR) change between the two methods in four studies but no differences were observed in other two.
Conclusions: Our systematic review indicated that RFA is an effective treatment option which could provide comparable oncologic outcomes to PN. Moreover, it may present obvious advantages in renal function preservation.