HIFU Treatment Process - Step by Step

hifu step by step treatment informationAblatherm® HIFU is an effective, alternative treatment option for localized prostate cancer. 


Procedure Preparation

HIFU Procedure Preparation

The HIFU device is made up of 2 modules – the control module which allows the physician to plan and supervise the computerized system and the patient treatment module.

The control model contains a robotic endorectal probe which is guided by the computerized system. The probe is mounted on a mobile support with robotic movements that enable the computerized device to automatically and precisely move the probe during treatment to treat the targeted areas of the prostate.

Hifu preparationThe ultrasound generator and integrated scanning equipment are on the end of the probe. A spinal anesthetic with intravenous sedation is administered before treatment begins. The patient will lie down on his right hand side for the duration of the treatment process. The robotic probe is covered with a degassed liquid filled balloon. The probe is then lubricated and inserted via the anus into the rectum. The probe is positioned near the prostate so the ultrasound treatment can begin.

Interoperative HIFU Treatment Planning

The first phase of the treatment process begins with a high definition scan of the prostate using the 7.5 MHz imaging transducer.

The urologist then plans the treatment beginning with the localization of the prostate apex and the rectal wall to define the correct lesion height and distance from the rectal wall.

Interoperative HIFU treatmentA 3-dimensional image of the prostate is then recreated by the computerized system. The physician uses this picture to plan the treatment and define the area to be treated by the robot. The prostate image is divided into a series of defined blocks and the computer software calculates the appropriate number of lesions. The 3.0 MHz probe calculates an adjustable ablation volume (total volume 29 mm3 to 36 mm3 (anterior to posterior).

HIFU Treatment Procedure

Once the treatment plan is complete, the shooting phase of the treatment can begin. The prostate can be treated in a single pass with the lesion height range from 19mm to 26mm (anterior-posterior distance). 400 to 800 adjacent lesions are required to cover the entire prostate volume.

The robotic probe then generates a high intensity focused ultrasound beam every 10 seconds to automatically carry out the urologists instructions. The ultrasound beam destroys a very small part of the prostate with extreme precision (to within a few millimetres.)

hifu treatment step by stepThe tissue in the targeted zones is destroyed with intense, very fast, highly localized heat. Each ultrasound shot is oval shaped, measuring up to 26mm high by 2mm or less in diameter. The process continues until all of the targeted areas are treated. Depending on the volume of the prostate, the treatment can last 2 to 2 ½ hours.

Post HIFU Treatment

Quick recovery after HIFU treatment

The prostate volume will increase during treatment due to inflammation and edema.  A temporary urinary catheter is inserted as the urethra is compressed by the swelling of the prostate. 

The catheter will allow for the elimination of urine during the approximate 14 days it takes for the edema to recede. 

Patients are discharged the day of the treatment.