Radiofrequency Ablation: A Piece of the Arthritis Pain Prevention Puzzle
Arthritis is a debilitating condition that can have a large impact on quality of life. Sometimes arthritis treatments are more effective on some people than on others, but one treatment that can often be successful when other treatments fail is radiofrequency ablation. Here is a guide to this type of treatment.
Overview of Radiofrequency Ablation
Radiofrequency ablation is a treatment that uses energy from radiofrequency to heat areas of nerve tissue in order to prevent the transmission of pain signals from the area. It can be effective for people suffering from arthritis as well as a range of other conditions including sciatica, trigeminal neuralgia, vertebral fractures, degenerative disc disease and more.
Guide to the Procedure
During the procedure, an intravenous line may be attached to one of your veins in order to apply a local anaesthetic or a sedative. This can help to reduce the level of discomfort you may feel. Once you have received the anaesthetic, a needle will be inserted into the area to be treated. The doctor performing the treatment will guide the needle to the exact spot that requires treatment, and when it is in position a microelectrode will be inserted.
A radiofrequency current will then be applied to heat up the tissue. This does not hurt, but you may feel a slight sensation.
After the treatment is complete, you will be asked to remain in the recovery room until you are given the all clear. You are advised not to carry out any strenuous activity, and you should also refrain from driving or operating machinery for at least 24 hours.
Benefits of the Treatment
Radiofrequency ablation has a number of benefits that often make it a suitable treatment for arthritis. Firstly, it provides long-lasting pain relief, with patients often enjoying up to 12 months or even years of pain relief following the treatment. There is also a high success rate for pain relief from this type of treatment.
In addition, it can also be used where other treatments have failed, and it can sometimes prove to be more effective than nerve blocks and injections.
Safety & Side Effects
Radiofrequency ablation is a safe and effective treatment, and it has very few potential complications associated with it. Light bleeding at the point of insertion is a possibility, and there is also a small risk of infection. If you are concerned, make sure you ask your doctor about the specific risks you may face before undergoing the procedure.
Side effects can include mild discomfort, bruising and swelling, but these do not often last long. If you notice any other side effects, especially severe pain, redness, or swelling, go to a hospital immediately and inform the doctors about your radiofrequency ablation treatment.
Ask Your Doctor About Radiofrequency Ablation
If you are suffering from arthritis, ask your doctor about radiofrequency ablation. This can be a very effective treatment, especially for people who have not reacted well to other forms of treatment. Your doctor may be able to provide you with more information about it and will be able to advise you on whether it would be suitable in your situation.
Jessica Watts has suffered from arthritis all her life. An avid blogger, she enjoys helping others by posting about her insights online.