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Suffering From Chronic Knee Pain? Cooled Radiofrequency Can Help

November 27, 2019

For people who suffer with chronic knee pain, an effective, minimally-invasive procedure called Cooled Radiofrequency (RF) could be just the thing to help regain mobility and quality of life. This outpatient procedure helps restore function and comfort to patients who have found little relief with other treatment and allows them return to normal activities within a few weeks.

“This treatment is an excellent choice for patients that are not surgical candidates for knee surgery or for patients who have undergone knee replacements, but have persistent knee pain despite their having surgery,” said Dr. Ricardo Taboada of the Hartford Hospital Pain Treatment Center.

The Cooled RF procedure targets the nerves that transmit pain using a generator that sends a small current of energy through an insulated electrode, or probe, placed within tissue. The device circulates water in the area while targeted nerves are heated with radiofrequency, disrupting and disabling their ability to transmit pain signals to the brain.

“The procedure is a two-step process,” said Dr. Taboada.  “First, we perform a nerve block by inserting three needles around the knee and injecting local anesthetic. This first step is to make sure the cooled radiofrequency is a viable treatment option. Once confirmed, the cooled radiofrequency is performed in a very similar fashion, but consists of blocking the pain signal for a much longer period of time.

“For those that respond, our success rate is roughly 80 percent in providing relief.”

Patients experience multiple benefits with Cooled RF. There are no incisions and general anesthesia is not required and the improvement gained in comfort and mobility all but eliminates the need for potentially addictive pain medication.

“This has made a tremendous difference for me,” said Alberta Elliott, a patient of Dr. Taboada’s at the Pain Treatment Center who has had the procedure performed twice on her left knee. “Prior to trying RF, I had all kinds of treatments that didn’t work as well as this.  It has been a great experience for me and I certainly recommend it to anyone.”

Cooled RF is offered at Hartford Hospital Pain Treatment Center in West Hartford and the Spine and Pain Institute at MidState Medical Center in Meriden.

For information about the Hartford Hospital Pain Treatment Center, click hereFor more information about pain treatment at MidState Medical Center in Meriden, click here.