Radiofrequency Ablation

Radiofrequency Ablation

Radiofrequency Ablation services offered in East Valley, Chandler, AZ

Radiofrequency ablation prevents pain signals from reaching your brain, making this novel approach an effective nonsurgical alternative for chronic back and neck pain. At Apex Pain Specialists, board-certified pain management specialists Naveen Reddy, MD, and Maziar Massrour, MD, offer radiofrequency ablation to give patients effective and long-lasting pain relief. Book your appointment online or call the Chandler, Arizona, office today. 

Radiofrequency Ablation Q & A

What is radiofrequency ablation?

Radiofrequency ablation is a nonsurgical treatment for chronic back and neck pain. The treatment damages a painful nerve, stopping it from sending pain signals to the brain and ultimately preventing pain. 

What conditions does radiofrequency ablation treat? 

Radiofrequency ablation treats back and neck pain stemming from inflammation within the facet joints, the tiny joints that link spinal vertebrae. Facet joint inflammation commonly happens because of wear and tear over time, so it’s most common in older adults. 

The inflammation can pressure and irritate the surrounding medial branch nerves (or sometimes the lateral nerves) that transmit pain signals to your brain. So, radiofrequency ablation is highly effective because it targets those nerves and disrupts the process.

While most commonly a treatment for age-related conditions like arthritis and other degenerative conditions, radiofrequency ablation is also effective for injuries involving facet joint inflammation. 

How does radiofrequency ablation work?

Before scheduling your radiofrequency ablation, you’ll have a diagnostic facet joint injection to verify that the facet joints are the source of your pain. 

You’ll receive mild sedation before your radiofrequency ablation. As you lie on your stomach, your physician creates a tiny needle puncture in the skin and guides a wire electrode into the painful nerve. Physicians use live X-ray imaging (fluoroscopy) to perfect placement and avoid damage to the nearby nerves. 

Your physician delivers radiofrequency waves through the electrode, creating a heat lesion and deactivating nerve signaling there. 

How long do the effects of radiofrequency ablation last?  

After radiofrequency ablation, it can take up to four weeks for complete nerve deactivation. You may need a pain reliever during this period. 

Radiofrequency ablation can relieve up to 90% of your pain for as long as two years. Physical therapy and exercise can maximize your effects. Most patients experience around six months of pain relief, and you can have a repeat procedure in the future if needed. 

What are the benefits of radiofrequency ablation?

Radiofrequency ablation offers some impressive benefits as compared to other approaches. Patients experience: 

  • Effective pain relief
  • Improved range of motion
  • Improved quality of life
  • Fast recovery
  • Long-lasting pain relief  
  • Reduced need for pain medicine
  • Low rate of complications

Another major advantage of radiofrequency ablation is its convenience. Apex Pain Specialists offers radiofrequency ablation as an outpatient procedure, so you can go home almost immediately afterward. 

Call Apex Pain Specialists or click on the online booking link for chronic pain help today.