RADIO FREQUENCY ABLATION
Radio Frequency Ablation (RFA) is a new non-surgical technique that helps to control pain. In this procedure, radio waves are used to produce heat to the pain-causing nerve tissues that interrupt the pain-causing signals from going to the brain. Radiofrequency ablation provides long-lasting relief to the patients having pain in the neck, chronic pain, and arthritic joints.
Radio frequency ablation is used when the patient cannot undergo surgery. This is a safe and drug-free procedure; over 70% of the patients felt relief after the treatment. Apart from treating the pain caused by arthritis, radio frequency ablation is proven effective in destroying the cancerous cells without affecting the normal healthy cells.
Why Someone May Need to Get This Treatment
Radio frequency ablations are for patients who suffer from chronic pains in their lower back and neck. It is also used to cure the tumors in bones, lungs and liver. The frequency used in treatment ranges from 350 kHz to 500 kHz.
As you age, you are likely to experience problems such as arthritis because the cartilage between your joints gets thin. There is a pair of facet joints in each spinal segment followed by two medial branch nerves that carry the pain signals to the brain. Spondylosis is the arthritis of vertebral column/spine; the patients having spondylosis can use radio frequency ablation to cure pain. The pain that occurs in the sacroiliac joints can also be treated with this procedure.
Radio frequency ablation is best suitable for patients who want to have long-term relief from pain without having surgery and with minimal complications.
Procedure of Radio Frequency Ablation
The procedure will last from 30 to 45 minutes. A small dosage of sedative will be given to the patient to relax him. With the help of an anesthetic, the doctor will numb the affected area and insert a thin radio frequency needle along the sides of pain-causing nerves. Radio frequency current is passed through the needle to the pain-causing tissues hence disrupting the pain-causing signals. At this time, the patient may feel a little pain or little warm sensation in the affected area. The patients can walk and can go home in a few hours after the procedure is done.
Recovery from Radio Frequency Ablation
The patient might feel some mild burning, soreness and swelling around the treated areas. You can use ice packs around the swollen areas to provide relief for the discomfort. After treatment, the patient can typically resume their normal medication dosage and daily routine activities after one or two days. While the treatment provides instant relief for some patients, for others, it can take up to 10 days for them to feel the full effects of the procedure.
How Long will the Treatment Last?
The patient may feel relief from pain lasting from nine months up to a year or two. In the meantime, the nerve that was burnt from radiofrequency ablations may regenerate. The joint pain will return if the nerve re-grows. However, this procedure is 70% effective in people having chronic and lower back pain. The patient may need to visit the doctor again if the pain continues.
What are the Possible Risks and Side Effects?
There is very little risk of complications during this procedure; however, the treatment may result in numbness and soreness in the affected area. The complications may include nerve pain, infection, lack of pain relief and swelling in the affected areas. These problems are not severe but the pain can cause minor discomfort in everyday life.
Pregnant women and people experiencing bleeding issues should not undergo this treatment.
Why Choose Northern Arizona Spine and Pain for RFA?
Northern Arizona Spine and Pain provides the best treatment for neck pain and lower back pain using radio frequency treatment. Please visit our website to learn more about the procedure or book your appointment: www.NAZspineandpain.com.