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Radiofrequency Ablation for Liver Abscesses From Chronic Granulomatous Disease

This study is currently recruiting participants. (see Contacts and Locations)
Verified January 2014 by National Institutes of Health Clinical Center (CC)
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
National Institutes of Health Clinical Center (CC) ( National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) ) Identifier:
First received: May 8, 2013
Last updated: March 14, 2014
Last verified: January 2014


- Abscesses are a pocket of infection in an organ or tissue. Patients with a disease called chronic granulomatous disease (CGD) often develop these abscesses. CGD is an inherited disorder that affects how white blood cells function. Liver abscesses in people with CGD often require surgery to remove them and treat the infection. However, some people with CGD cannot have full surgery because it would be too risky. Researchers want to try a procedure called radiofrequency ablation (RFA) to treat these liver abscesses. RFA can usually be done without a major operation. This study will see if RFA is a safe and effective treatment for liver abscesses in patients with CGD.


- To see if RFA is a safe and effective treatment for CGD-related liver abscesses.


- Individuals between 18 and 75 years of age with CGD who have liver abscesses that cannot be treated with surgery.


  • Participants will be screened with a physical exam and medical history. Blood and urine samples will be collected. Imaging studies will be performed on the liver.
  • Participants will have RFA for the abscesses. RFA is an image-guided technique that heats and destroys specific tissue, such as tumor tissue. It will target any abscesses on the liver.
  • After the procedure, participants will stay in the hospital for monitoring before being released.
  • Participants will have regular follow-up visits for up to 1 year after treatment. Blood and urine samples will be collected. Additional imaging studies will be performed.

Condition Intervention Phase
Radiofrequency Ablation
Liver Abscesses -Staphylococcus Infection
Chronic Granulomatous Disease
Procedure: RFA - Radiofrequency Ablation
Procedure: Scans - Liver
Procedure: Liver
Procedure: Drawn
Phase 1

Study Type: Interventional
Study Design: Allocation: Non-Randomized
Endpoint Classification: Safety/Efficacy Study
Intervention Model: Single Group Assignment
Masking: Open Label
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: Radiofrequency Ablation (RFA) for the Treatment of Liver Abscesses in Patients With Chronic Granulomatous Disease

Resource links provided by NLM:

Further study details as provided by National Institutes of Health Clinical Center (CC):

Primary Outcome Measures:
  • The primary endpoint for this study is patient safety, defined as no occurrences of Grade 3 or higher toxicities and are at least possibly related to the study intervention. [ Time Frame: 5 years ] [ Designated as safety issue: Yes ]

Estimated Enrollment: 30
Study Start Date: April 2013
Estimated Study Completion Date: February 2023
Estimated Primary Completion Date: February 2023 (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)
Intervention Details:
    Procedure: RFA - Radiofrequency Ablation
    Procedure: Scans - Liver
    Procedure: Liver
    Procedure: Drawn
Detailed Description:

Radiofrequency Ablation (RFA) has become an increasingly common therapeutic treatment for neoplasms in the liver. A number of devices are now Food and Drug Administration cleared for this indication, and a growing body of literature supports this technique as a therapeutic option for patients with primary or metastatic hepatic malignancies. In vivo animal studies have also shown that this technique can also be used to treat infections. Insertion of the thermal energy delivery probe into an infected liver abscess destroys the bacteria while preserving surrounding tissue. Off-label use of RFA was successfully used to treat 22 abscesses in 4 patients with chronic granulomatous disease who had inoperable liver abscesses. The proposed clinical trial will specifically evaluate the feasibility, safety, and to a lesser extent, efficacy of RFA to treat liver abscesses in subjects with previously diagnosed chronic granulomatous disease. This will be a non-randomized case study conducted at the Clinical Center at the National Institutes of Health. One RFA device will be used. Ten subjects will be enrolled. If the method proves to be both feasible and safe, detailed analysis on efficacy will be performed. RFA eventually could play an important clinical role in patients with chronic granulomatous disease and liver abscesses that are not amenable to surgical management and are without other effective therapeutic options, or might otherwise be incompletely treated with surgical resection and debridement alone.


Ages Eligible for Study:   18 Years to 75 Years
Genders Eligible for Study:   Both
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

A patient will be included if he or she meets all of the following criteria:

  1. Has documented chronic granulomatous disease
  2. Age 18 - 75
  3. Has a liver abscess infected with Staphylococcus aureus, but is not an optimal candidate for curative surgical resection either due to location of disease, multiplicity of disease, or previous surgery or other comorbidities, such as pulmonary insufficiency, or has other contraindications to general anesthesia or perioperative management or refuses surgery.
  4. Is willing to return to NIH for imaging scans
  5. Is willing to undergo testing or procedures associated with this protocol
  6. Has failed long term antibiotic treatment and abscess drainage if applicable.


A patient will be excluded if he or she satisfies 1 or more of the following criteria:

  1. Positive results for toxin-producing bacteria obtained from liver biopsy in the pertinent abscess.
  2. Is a good candidate for liver-curative open surgical resection and does not refuse the surgery
  3. Is not a candidate for RFA therapy due to lesion size, location, and/or infection with a non staphylococcal bacteria.
  4. Has a prothrombin time (PT) or partial thromboplastin time (PTT) > 1.5 times normal (except in patients who have a known lupus anticoagulant or other condition which a hematologist deems will not cause excessive bleeding despite the abnormal coagulation parameters).
  5. Has a platelet count < 50,000/mm(3) which cannot be maintained despite platelet transfusions.
  6. If you are pregnant.
  7. Any condition that, in the investigator s opinion, places the patient at undue risk by participating in the study

Please Note: Co-morbidities in critically ill patients will not themselves constitute exclusion criteria because the cause of their illness/condition may require the use of RFA as a less invasive treatment than surgery.

  Contacts and Locations
Choosing to participate in a study is an important personal decision. Talk with your doctor and family members or friends about deciding to join a study. To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the Contacts provided below. For general information, see Learn About Clinical Studies.

Please refer to this study by its identifier: NCT01851460

Contact: Patricia L Littel, R.N. (301) 402-5964
Contact: Elizabeth M Kang, M.D. (301) 402-7567

United States, Maryland
National Institutes of Health Clinical Center, 9000 Rockville Pike Recruiting
Bethesda, Maryland, United States, 20892
Contact: For more information at the NIH Clinical Center contact Patient Recruitment and Public Liaison Office (PRPL)    800-411-1222 ext TTY8664111010   
Sponsors and Collaborators
Principal Investigator: Elizabeth M Kang, M.D. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)
  More Information

Additional Information:
Responsible Party: National Institutes of Health Clinical Center (CC) ( National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) ) Identifier: NCT01851460     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: 130117, 13-I-0117
Study First Received: May 8, 2013
Last Updated: March 14, 2014
Health Authority: United States: Federal Government

Keywords provided by National Institutes of Health Clinical Center (CC):
Radiofrequency Ablation (RFA)
Liver Abscesses
Congenital Immunodeficiency
Chronic Granulomatous Disease (CGD)
Non-toxin producing Staphylococcus Aureus
Inoperable Liver Abscesses

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Granulomatous Disease, Chronic
Liver Abscess
Staphylococcal Infections
Abdominal Abscess
Bacterial Infections
Digestive System Diseases
Genetic Diseases, Inborn
Genetic Diseases, X-Linked
Gram-Positive Bacterial Infections
Hematologic Diseases
Immune System Diseases
Immunologic Deficiency Syndromes
Leukocyte Disorders
Liver Diseases
Lymphatic Diseases
Lymphoproliferative Disorders
Pathologic Processes
Phagocyte Bactericidal Dysfunction
Liver Extracts
Hematologic Agents
Pharmacologic Actions
Therapeutic Uses processed this record on November 25, 2014