Radiofrequency ablation (RFA) is a minimally invasive technique that reduces the size of tumors, nodules, or other growths in the body. It is used to treat a variety of conditions, including benign and malignant tumors, chronic venous insufficiency in the legs, and chronic back and neck pain. RFA is typically done in a doctor's office or hospital and patients usually return home the same day. The procedure works by using an electric current to heat a small area of nerve tissue and prevent it from sending pain signals. This can provide lasting relief for people with chronic pain, especially in the lower back, neck and arthritic joints.
It is also known as rhizotomy and is one of the newest pain control techniques. Radiofrequency ablation uses radio waves to create heat that is used to kill tissue. When the procedure is performed on nerve tissue, it can relieve pain that has not been helped by other approaches. It has been used very successfully to treat people who have heart rhythm problems and more recently, it has been used to destroy tumors and treat pain. Radiofrequency ablation (RFA) and microwave ablation (AMM) are treatments that use imaging guidance to place a needle through the skin until it reaches a liver tumor. In RFA, high-frequency electric currents pass through an electrode in the needle, creating a small region of heat.
In MWA, microwaves are created from the needle to create a small region of heat. Heat destroys cancer cells in the liver. RFA and AMM are effective treatment options for patients who may have difficulty with surgery or for those whose tumors are less than one and a half inches in diameter. The success rate for completely eliminating small liver tumors is over 85 percent.