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Ablative Kidney Cancer Services

Many types of cancer, including kidney, liver, lung and prostate carcinomas, can be destroyed—ablated—where they exist in the body. The cancerous tissue can be eradicated using cold energy (cryoablation) or heat energy (radiofrequency ablation). Delivered through the skin, or percutaneously, both methods are the least invasive technologies approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat kidney tumors. Although the physicians at the UC Irvine Health Ablative Oncology Center use both methods, most kidney cancer specialists increasingly regard percutaneous cryoablation as a safer, more effective technology.

Cryoablation needles freeze a renal tumor

What is percutaneous cryoablation?

In percutaneous cryoablation, no incisions are made. Instead, specially trained physicians work together to insert thin, needle-
like probes through the skin and into the tumor. Specialists,
using advanced imaging technologies, precisely target and
destroy the tumor without damaging surrounding tissues and organs. This technique helps avoid larger incisions that are associated with cryoablation during traditional open surgery,
and it is substantially less invasive than robot-assisted or laparoscopic surgery.

How does cryoablation work?

Depending on the tumor's size, one or more probes are inserted into the tumor. Pressurized argon gas is delivered to a small chamber at the needle's tip, where it expands into an ice ball
cooled to minus 100 degrees Celsius. The ice ball engulfs the tumor while sparing healthy kidney tissue. Ultrathin sensor needles also may be inserted at the tumor margins to monitor temperatures and ensure that all the cancerous tissue is destroyed.

Learn more about percutaneous cryoablation of kidney cancer ›

As one of the first multidisciplinary ablative oncology centers in the nation — and the only one in Orange County — the Ablative Oncology Center offers patients leading-edge therapies delivered by highly skilled teams of surgeons, nurses, technicians and other medical professionals at UC Irvine Medical Center. Because center physicians are actively engaged in research at Orange County's only university medical center, patients also have access to the innovative clinical trials before they are available to the general public. Learn more about UC Irvine Health clinical trials ›

For more information about ablative treatment of kidney cancer or to make an appointment, please call 714-456-7005.

Clinical Team

Dr. Jaime Landman Jaime Landman, MD
Urologic oncologist

Dr. Landman, director of the Ablative Oncology Center, is an internationally recognized expert in percutaneous cryoablation and other ablative techniques to treat kidney cancer. He is experienced in all forms of minimally invasive kidney surgery, including robotic surgery. He has published more than 185 peer-reviewed articles and more than 60 book chapters, and he has lectured around the world on the subject of minimally invasive urology. His research interests are in kidney cancer, outcomes, kidney ablation and kidney imaging technologies as well as preserving kidney function. Landman’s research efforts have helped define many of the minimally invasive kidney procedures performed today, earning him the 2005 Arthur Smith prize for creativity and dynamic innovation at the World Congress of Endourology.

Landman’s clinical interests include all aspects of minimally invasive urologic oncology, with special emphasis on kidney cancer and kidney stone disease. He has performed more than 2,000 advanced minimally invasive kidney procedures and he is dedicated to improving the techniques and technology associated with minimally invasive surgery.

Learn more about Dr. Landman ›

Dr. Ralph V. Clayman Ralph V. Clayman, MD

Dr. Clayman is an internationally respected urologist who pioneered the minimally invasive surgical techniques that have revolutionized treatment for diseases of the kidney and urinary tract. He performed the world's first removal of a tumor-bearing kidney through a small incision using a laparoscope and perfected the use of cryotherapy to treat renal cancer and other less invasive methods to improve patient outcomes. Clayman, dean of UC Irvine's School of Medicine, has invented more than a dozen devices for performing minimally invasive surgery.

Learn more about Dr. Clayman ›

Dr. Edward Uchio Edward Uchio, MD
Urologic oncologist

Dr. Uchio is a fellowship-trained urologist who specializes in urologic oncology. He has experience in performing open surgery as well as in minimally invasive surgical procedures. Trained in ablative techniques, he is one of the few urologists in Orange County using the least invasive methods to treat kidney and prostate cancer.

Learn more about Dr. Uchio ›