PainRelief.com Interview with:
Kaitlin Carrato, M.D., Chief Resident in Interventional Radiology
MedStar Georgetown University Hospital, and
John B. Smirniotopoulos, M.D., Interventional Radiologist
MedStar Georgetown University Hospital
PainRelief.com: What is the background for this study? What is the main indication for the RFA procedure?
Response: Roughly one in four U.S. adults have knee pain due to arthritis that interferes with their everyday lives and activities. A treatment called genicular nerve radiofrequency ablation (RFA) is a safe and effective option for reducing pain from osteoarthritis of the knee, one of the most common joints affected by osteoarthritis. Interventional radiologists perform genicular nerve RFA using image guidance to place probe needles next to nerves around the knee that send pain signals to the brain. The primary indication for this procedure is chronic pain that has not been sufficiently managed by other treatments, prescription medications, physical therapy, or for patients with persistent pain even after knee replacement.
This study examined patient demographics, prior surgical history, degree of osteoarthritis and other clinical characteristics that may affect how well RFA reduces knee pain. We measured post-procedure pain in 36 patients using the visual analog scale (VAS) and the Western Ontario McMaster Universities Osteoarthritis (WOMAC) pain scale. We then evaluated whether pain reduction levels were influenced by demographics and clinical characteristics.