Radiofrequency ablation (or “RFA” for short) for spine, hip, and knee pain is a minimally invasive, non-surgical approach to managing pain typically arising from the spine or joints. Targeting the area around the spine or joint, RFA involves the heating, or ablation, of the appropriate nerves involved in the transmission of pain. While this may sound a bit scary, it is actually quite straight forward and very well tolerated.
It is important to note that there is a selection process before going forth with the ablation. Not every patient is a suitable candidate. Prior to undergoing the definitive treatment, simple blocks are performed at the area suspected of generating the pain as a means of confirmation. The patient is then asked to pay attention to the extent of their pain relief as well as any improvement in function in the diagnostic period. If the patient has an excellent response, RFA becomes an appropriate option.