Cancer Care

Leading edge treatment for tumor ablations

The Ascension Providence Rochester Hospital Tumor Ablation Program is one of the most comprehensive, multi-organ ablation programs in Michigan.

Ascension Providence Rochester – Tumor Ablation Program

The Tumor Ablation Program at Ascension Providence Rochester Hospital is one of the most comprehensive, multi-organ ablation programs in Michigan. Tumor ablation is a minimally invasive option for the thorough destruction of cancerous tumors in nearly any area of the body. Ablation is an outpatient procedure and is similar to a needle biopsy, however it is performed under CT scan and/or ultrasound guidance for tumor visualization. Tumor ablation can be performed with either heat or cold, optimally using microwave or cryotechnology. Cryoablation, or freezing, can be used to treat benign tumors, such as breast fibroadenomas, chest/abdominal wall desmoids and endometriosis of the abdominal wall.

Image-guided tumor ablation can treat many cancerous tumors as thoroughly as other treatment options with potentially less pain, less risk, faster recovery time and lower recurrence rates. Tumor ablation can also be an option for high-risk patients such as those with obesity, poor heart/lung status, or those with one kidney.

The program is led by Peter Littrup, MD, an Interventional Radiologist and a globally recognized scientist in medical imaging. Dr. Littrup has treated over 1,000 patients with lung, liver, kidney and soft tissue tumors.

Insurance

Although Dr. Littrup and his medical support staff are not insurance experts, they are very willing to work with patients to obtain and/or provide sufficient documentation to support an initial evaluation or verbal consultation. Billing codes exist for the image-guided ablation of liver, lung and kidney tumors, which will be used to obtain authorization.

However, accepted billing codes for FDA-accepted ablation equipment does not ensure individual insurance companies will cover the procedure. In addition, Dr. Littrup has pioneered the use of cryoablation for soft tissue locations, which may not fall under standard “organ-based” billing codes. This will likely require an appropriate appeal, and it may still not be approved for coverage.

Cryoablation for benign breast tumors, or fibroadenomas has a specific billing code with excellent outcomes based on multicenter trials. However, the lack of ANY coverage for cryoablation of breast cancer is common due to many political/economic reasons, rather than the scientific integrity, as compared to nearly any other anatomic location.

Cryoablation for breast cancer at Ascension Providence Rochester Hospital is done with the highest scientific integrity under Dr. Littrup’s experienced guidance, plus an industry-sponsored protocol for breast cancer is under way. For appropriate “off-protocol” breast cancer cases, Dr. Littrup will carefully consider potential cryoablation benefits.

Contact Dr. Littrup

To schedule an appointment with Dr. Littrup, call Central Scheduling at 844-462-2462 and request a “cryoablation consult".

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