In recent years there has been debate among spinal surgeons, neurosurgeons and pain physicians regarding the efficacy of radiofrequency (RF) ablation when treating patients with a neuropathic pain source. It is usually considered as a treatment option after conservative treatment has failed. Twenty-eight patients with a minimal follow-up of 1 year were examined in our institution after they had undergone pulsed radiofrequency (PRF) procedures due to neuropathic spinal pain. Nineteen patients (68%) reported long-term pain relief (more than 1 year) which was defined as a reduction of the visual analogue score by at least 30%. No complications were found in this study except for mild discomfort in the treated area which spontaneously resolved up to 3 weeks after the procedure. We concluded that PRF is a safe and an effective procedure for patients who suffer from chronic neuropathic pain from spinal origin. It should be tried after conservative treatment has failed.
- Neuropathic spinal pain
- Pulsed radiofrequency