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Nevada Pain Care Treatments

Radiofrequency Neurotomy of the Lumbar Facets

During this minimally-invasive procedure, the physician uses heat from radio waves to treat painful facet joints in your lower back. This procedure is also called radiofrequency rhizotomy.

Treatment Quick Facts

What is this treatment for?

This procedure may treat back pain that doesn’t respond to medications or to physical therapy.

How is this treatment administered?

Your provider will carefully guide a needle through the skin and down to the target nerve. A thin electrode is passed through this needle. When the electrode is activated, it heats up the nerve. This heating process, called ablation,  will eliminate the nerve's ability to transmit pain signals.

How long is this treatment?

The procedure typically takes about 30-90 minutes.
Watch and learn

Please take a moment to watch a quick procedure video.

If you have any questions, please contact us and we would be happy to help you.

About Radiofrequency Neurotomy of the Lumbar Facets

What is the procedure like?

To begin, you lie on your stomach. You may be given medicine to relax you. We numb the skin and tissue of your lower back. Next, we guide a tube called a "cannula" to your spine. A video x-ray device called a "fluoroscope" helps guide the tube to the medial branch nerves. These tiny nerves carry pain signals from your facet joints to your brain. Now, we push an electrode through the cannula and down to these nerves. We test its position with a weak jolt of energy. If this recreates your pain, we know it's in the right place. Then, we heat the nerves with radio waves. Heating them blocks their ability to carry pain signals. We may need to treat several nerves.

What happens after the procedure?

When it's done, you get a small bandage on your skin. You're watched in a recovery room for a brief time. Then, you can go home. You may feel sore, and you may still have back pain. But you'll gradually feel pain relief. This can take several weeks.

Is this treatment right for you?

Schedule an appointment to discuss this treatment with your provider.

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Appointment Information