Radiofrequency Ablation Specialist

Stellar Pain and Spine Specialists

Pain Management located in Chicago, IL & River Forest, IL

If conventional medical treatment hasn’t helped relieve chronic pain in your back, neck, hips, or knees, it’s time to consider radiofrequency ablation. The experienced team at Stellar Pain and Spine Specialists specializes in using radiofrequency ablation, including the innovative water-cooled COOLIEF® device, to give you long-lasting pain relief. To learn if radiofrequency ablation is right for you, use the online booking feature or call one of the offices in the Northside of Chicago and western suburbs, including Lincoln Park, Wicker Park, Lake View East, Ukrainian Village, Budlong Woods, Norwood Park West, Bucktown, Andersonville, River Forest, and Oak Park, Illinois.

Radiofrequency Ablation Q & A

What is radiofrequency ablation?

Radiofrequency (RF) ablation is a minimally invasive procedure to relieve chronic pain. The team at Stellar Pain and Spine uses RF energy to create a wound on one or more nerves.

The wound blocks pain signals that normally travel through the nerve to your brain. When the message doesn’t reach your brain, that significantly reduces or eliminates your pain.

Most people get long-lasting pain relief after RF ablation. The results usually last at least nine months and can continue for up to two years. Eventually, the nerve regrows, and the effect wears off. Then you can get another RF ablation if needed.

What conditions improve with radiofrequency ablation?

The team at Stellar Pain and Spine frequently uses RF ablation to alleviate:

  • Back pain
  • Neck pain
  • Hip pain
  • Knee pain (COOLIEF radiofrequency ablation)

However, they can target any nerve, including sensory nerves as they enter the spinal canal. As a result, radiofrequency ablation is a good treatment choice for many types and causes of pain, from sports injuries and sciatica to neuropathy and joint pain.

What is COOLIEF radiofrequency ablation?

COOLIEF is a cutting-edge radiofrequency device that uses water-cooled electrodes as it delivers RF energy. The cooling activity allows COOLIEF to create a larger wound without the risk of overheating the surrounding tissues. A larger wound means longer-lasting results.

The special design of COOLIEF is to relieve pain caused by knee osteoarthritis. The team also may also use it for chronic back, neck, or hip pain.

What should I expect during radiofrequency ablation?

When you get your radiofrequency ablation, you lie down on a table that allows your provider to take real-time X-rays. The X-rays provide a clear image of the targeted nerve and show the thin, hollow needle as they guide it to the nerve.

Once the radiofrequency needle or the COOLIEF device is at the nerve, your provider sends radiofrequency waves through the needle and into the nerve. 

Treating the nerve only takes about 90 seconds, so your provider can wound several nerves with RF energy during one appointment if needed.

You can walk around right after RF ablation. Some people experience immediate pain relief, but it can take a week or two for the full results to take effect.

To learn if you’re a good candidate for radiofrequency ablation, call Stellar Pain and Spine, or request an appointment online today.