Relieving Pain. Restoring Hope.
Radiofrequency Ablation (RFA)
About the treatment
Radiofrequency ablation (RFA) is a minimally invasive procedure used to treat chronic arthritic pain throughout the spine. This procedure reduces pain by ablating nerves sending pain signals to the brain by using an electrical current from radio waves to heat and ablate the nerve tissues. This is a safe outpatient procedure which is typically completed within 20 minutes. Light intravenous sedation is also offered and recommended to reduce discomfort during the procedure.
Once sedated by a Desert Pain Specialists nurse, patients are moved to the procedure suite, the area to be addressed is cleansed and prepped. A microelectrode is then injected and the stimulation process begins. Your physician will test multiple nerves while in communication with the patient and using live fluoroscopy (x-ray) to ensure the correct area is being treated. Once the correct placement area is verified, the radiofrequency electrode is heated, burning the surrounding tissue and nerves and reducing pain for 1-2 years.
After the treatment
Radiofrequency ablation can take 4-6 weeks to take full effect as soft tissues must heal from the procedure. It is common to experience some soreness at the procedure site,. A less common side effect can include a sunburn-type sensation at the procedure site due to the radiofrequency used. Patients are advised to utilize ice and OTC pain medications to reduce pain and soreness. If you believe RFA would be a good solution for your chronic pain, talk to your Desert Pain Specialists provider today.