Radiofrequency Ablation Increasingly Being Used for Sacroiliac Joint Pain

Radiofrequency ablationRadiofrequency ablation of spinal joints is one of the most technologically advanced procedures in pain management today. The procedure has been shown to provide excellent pain relief for those with arthritis of the lumbar spinal joints along with the mid back and neck.

Those joints are called facet joints and are about the size of a thumbnail. Research in the past has shown that radiofrequency ablation may provide 12 to 18 months of consistent pain relief, which is significantly longer than what a steroid injection typically provides. (Spine 28:16, 1877-1878)

Over the last couple years, the technology has been used by Phoenix pain doctors also treat sacroiliac joint pain. Little-known fact by most people is that sacroiliac joint pain causes between 12 and 25% of low back pain. (Spine 2009, 34:1, 31-37) That has not been a considerable amount of research looking at how effective the technology is For SI SI joint pain treatmentjoint pain, however, a recent study was presented at this years American Academy of pain medicine meeting.

What that study did was evaluate 80 patients at the Cleveland cClinic who underwent the procedure. The study showed that over half of the patients in the study experienced over 50% pain relief for upwards of six months.

Studies in the lumbar spine have shown a longer duration of pain relief. Sometimes upwards of 18 months. However, future studies for SI joint pain with a larger number of patients may end up showing better and longer pain relief.

Dealing with sacroiliac joint pain can be tough. There’s no great surgical solution. Injections of steroid into the sacroiliac joint may bring significant pain relief for a few weeks to a few months. However, the joint is fairly irregular and sometimes difficult to achieve steroid placement in the complete arthritic area causing the pain. Chiropractic treatment along with physical rehabilitation and anti-inflammatory medication by mouth can provide significant pain relief as well.

One of the most difficult aspects of pain management is achieving lengthy blocks of time that pain can be relieved with existing procedures. This is one of the reasons why radiofrequency ablation has become so popular at pain management Phoenix clinics, is that it provides a much longer time. The pain relief as compared to steroid injections. Thankfully a showing significantly beneficial results for sacroiliac joint pain.

SI joint arthritisFuture research will delineate the best methods of applying this technique and sacroiliac joint pain. When used in conjunction with existing pain management medications and therapies, it presents hope to those dealing with pain emanating from this joint.

Pain clinics in Phoenix often provide RFA treatments, which are also known as radiofrequency lesioning. When looking for a Henderson or Phoenix pain clinic, make sure RFA is offered.

Where Could Your Shoulder Pain be Coming From?

At some point during life, two out of three individuals will experience shoulder pain. For a decent amount of those people who have shoulder pain, it is not actually coming from the shoulder. Where else could it be coming from?Pain Management Phoenix

One of the most common areas of shoulder pain coming from outside the joint is from the neck. If an individual has either a herniated disc that is pushing on a cervical nerve roots or spinal stenosis that is pushing on one or multiple nerve roots, that can lead to referred pain in the shoulder that may masquerade as originating from the shoulder.

Another source of pain that refers to the shoulder is from the biceps tendon. The biceps itself has two origins, one in the shoulder and one actually outside it. If it’s gets inflamed and tendinitis is occurring, a person may complain of shoulder pain when actuality it is coming from the tendon and should be treated as such.

It is a little-known fact that carpal tunnel syndrome can cause pain that goes backwards into the shoulder. Another potential source of shoulder pain from outside the joint is from

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A cervical herniated disc may lead to pain in the shoulder.

the acromioclavicular joint, called the AC joint for short. This is the joint where the clavicle meets up with the acromion. It is a small joint, but can cause a lot of shoulder area pain if it is arthritic and inflamed.

There is a nerve called the suprascapular nerve that may become pinched in the spinoglenoid notch. This may cause pain and weakness in the shoulder, but the source of the pain is actually not in the joint at all.

A cardiac event can refer pain into the shoulder, specifically the left shoulder. This may cause pain that appears to emanate from the shoulder, but in actuality it is occurring from angina or an ongoing cardiac event.

For a physician working up shoulder pain, it is often evident on physical examination that the shoulder is not actually the source of the pain. It also may take a diagnostic Injection into either the joint or the subacromial space to see if that relieves the discomfort. if it does, the shoulder can be assumed as being the generation of the pain.

The most concerning external source of shoulder pain is obviously the potential for a cardiac event, so physicians should have a low threshold for getting this worked up emergently if suspected.

The bottom line here is that just because a person is having shoulder pain, does not mean

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Rotator cuff problems lead to shoulder pain.

that the shoulder is actually causing that pain. It may be coming from somewhere else and simply referring pain in.

If you live in the Phoenix or Henderson area and are experiencing shoulder pain, a pain clinic in Phoenix can help delineate whether or not your shoulder pain is actually coming from the shoulder. Pain management Phoenix clinics have Board Certified doctors and Phoenix chiropractor doctors who are experts in the workup and treatment of shoulder pain.