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Papers of the Week


J Pain Res


MRI for in vivo Analysis of Ablation Zones Formed by Cooled Radiofrequency Neurotomy to Treat Chronic Joint Pain Across Multiple Axial Spine Sites.


Radiofrequency (RF) ablation is the targeted damage of neural tissues to disrupt pain transmission in sensory nerves using thermal energy generated in situ by an RF probe. The present study aims to evaluate the utility of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) for in vivo quantitative assessment of ablation zones in human subjects following cooled radiofrequency neurotomy for chronic pain at spinal facet or sacroiliac joints. Ablation zone size and shape have been shown in animal models to be influenced by size and type of RF probe – with cooled RF probes typically forming larger, more spherical ablation zones. To date, MRI of RF ablation zones in humans has been limited to two single retrospective case reports.