High focused ultrasound is a non-invasive treatment used for destroying benign and potentially also malignant tumors. Recent data have suggested that the generation of large volumes of tumor debris by high focused ultrasound may initiate an adaptive antitumor immune response by the release of tumor antigens and damage associated molecular patterns.
The patient, a 48-year-old woman who was diagnosed with hormone receptor positive HER2 negative breast cancer 17 months before presentation had repeatedly refused any state-of-the-art treatment, instead she specifically asked to be treated with high focused ultrasound. After an intense discussion in our multidisciplinary tumor board we decided to treat her primary tumor with the Echopulse device. 10 months after her treatment, the tumor in the breast showed a complete remission by ultrasound and the involved axillary lymph node showed a more than 50% reduction in size.
The observed local complete remission in the breast and partial but substantial remission of the involved axillary lymph node may add to the body of evidence indicating a systemic, possibly immunologic, effect of local therapy of a primary tumor with high focused ultrasound. This possible effect needs further investigation in prospective clinical trials.