Dr André Varandas Borges | Specialist Doctor:



Radiofrequency (RF) is a medical technique that uses radiofrequency currents to generate heat in specific tissues in order to treat various conditions, including musculoskeletal pathologies. The application of radiofrequency in this context is often referred to as "radiofrequency ablation" or "radiofrequency neurotomy". This technique is used to relieve chronic pain associated with certain conditions.

Here are some key points about the radiofrequency technique in musculoskeletal pathologies:

Principle of Action: Radiofrequency works by heating the specific nerve fibres that transmit pain signals to the brain. By heating these nerve fibres, the transmission of pain signals is interrupted, resulting in pain relief.

Indications: Radiofrequency ablation is often used to treat chronic pain associated with conditions such as osteoarthritis, back pain, facet pain, post-herpetic neuralgia and myofascial pain syndromes. It can be applied to different areas of the body, including the spine, sacroiliac joints, facet joints and other sites.

Procedure: During the radiofrequency ablation procedure, an electrode is placed near the specific nerves responsible for pain transmission. A radiofrequency current is then applied to generate heat and damage the nerve fibres. This interrupts the transmission of pain signals in these nerves.

Image monitoring: Radiofrequency ablation is often performed under image guidance, such as fluoroscopy or ultrasound, to ensure precise placement of the electrode in the target area.

Duration of Relief: The pain relief obtained with radiofrequency ablation can vary from person to person, but many patients experience a significant reduction in pain that can last for months to years. In some cases, the procedure can be repeated if the pain returns.

Post-procedure care: Patients may need a recovery period after radiofrequency ablation, during which they should avoid intense activity. The doctor will provide specific guidelines for post-procedure care.

It's important to emphasise that radiofrequency ablation is a therapeutic option that should be considered on a case-by-case basis, based on the health professional's assessment and the patient's specific needs. The procedure can offer significant relief from chronic pain in some situations.


Consult here some of pathologies and treatments that Dr. André Varandas Borges treats.