Pulsed radiofrequency

Pulsed radiofrequency

Pulsed radiofrequency is a development of heat based radiofrequency denervation, both procedures used in medicine to treat especially chronic pain. Unlike heat based radiofrequency treatment, pulsed radiofrequency does no direct damage to the nerve.Fact|date=November 2007

Pulsed radiofrequency treatment is based on the principle that when a nerve is constantly subjected to painful stimuli, that nerve (through molecular processes) becomes adapted to, and more efficient at transmitting pain signals to the brain, thus a patient experiences more pain. While not lethal to the nerve, the pulsed radiofrequency treatment applies a very high electromagnetic field through a small catheter inserted in the vicinity of the nerve. The aim is to restore the nerve to its original state, before it "learned" to transmitt pain more efficiently.

Local anesthetic is often used in consultations prior to the treatment to positively identify the nerve causing the problem.

A single procedure usually takes an hour to complete. How long a treatment lasts varies per person.

While questioned by some, most mainstream medical doctors recognize that it has a role in pain management.Who|date=November 2007

ide effects

Since pulsed radiofrequency involves the placement of a catheter near a nerve, pain may be associated with this procedure. Patients undergoing this procedure can be anesthetized or sedated using drugs intraveniously. Local anesthetic, however, cannot be used as they interfere with the procedure.Fact|date=November 2007Frequently the pain is greater for a few days following than it was before treatment.


While there are few immediate complications that can occur, because the procedure involves the use of a catheter so close to nerves, there is the risk that damage may may occur to other structures such as blood vessels, other nerves close to the area where the catheter needs to be placed.


[http://www.sedolor.es/ponencia.php?id=643 The place of pulsed radiofrequency treatment in the management of chronic pain.]
[http://www.drstokke.no/site/submenu.asp?id=5 Pulsed and isotherm radiofrequency therapy]

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