Radiofrequency Lesioning is a procedure in which a section of nerve tissue is heated to cause a long-lasting interruption in pain signals.
An Illinois Pain Institute physician identifies the nerve or nerves that are sending pain signals to the brain. Once identified, an instrument is placed under the skin through which electrical stimulation is transmitted to heat the surrounding tissue. A local anesthetic is used sometimes with intravenous (IV) sedation.
Patients with neck or back pain due to facet joint disease, occipital neuralgia or other pains from irritated nerves are ideal candidates. Patients must have been responsive to local anesthetic blocks and cannot be taking a blood thinning medication or have an active infection.
The Radiofrequency Lesioning procedure takes 20 to 120 minutes.
Muscle soreness at site or lower back possibly for up to a week. Patients are able to return to work as soon as soon as 24 – 48 hours after the procedure.
Procedure may need to be repeated as the pain may return within months to years.