Ablation outcome of irreversible electroporation on potato monitored by impedance spectrum under multi-electrode system

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Background Irreversible electroporation (IRE) therapy relies on pulsed electric fields to non-thermally ablate cancerous tissue. Methods for evaluating IRE ablation in situ are critical to assessing treatment outcome. Analyzing changes in tissue impedance caused by electroporation has been proposed as a method for quantifying IRE ablation. In this paper, we assess the hypothesis that irreversible electroporation ablation outcome can be monitored using the impedance change measured by the electrode pairs not in use, getting more information about the ablation size in different directions.

Methods Using a square four-electrode configuration, the two diagonal electrodes were used to electroporate potato tissue. Next, the impedance changes, before and after treatment, were measured from different electrode pairs and the impedance information was extracted by fitting the data to an equivalent circuit model. Finally, we correlated the change of impedance from various electrode pairs to the ablation geometry through the use of fitted functions; then these functions were used to predict the ablation size and compared to the numerical simulation results.

Results The change in impedance from the electrodes used to apply pulses is larger and has higher deviation than the other electrode pairs. The ablation size and the change in resistance in the circuit model correlate with various linear functions. The coefficients of determination for the three functions are 0.8121, 0.8188 and 0.8691, respectively, showing satisfactory agreement. The functions can well predict the ablation size under different pulse numbers, and in some directions it did even better than the numerical simulation method, which used different electric field thresholds for different pulse numbers.

Conclusions The relative change in tissue impedance measured from the non-energized electrodes can be used to assess ablation size during treatment with IRE according to linear functions.




BioMedical Engineering OnLine. 2018 Sep 20;17(1):126