Some of the most common runner injuries Dr. Nikesh Seth treats are ACL injuries, MCL injuries, tendonitis, patella injuries, and injured IT bands. Although Integrated Pain Consultants offers a wide variety of alternative treatments for injuries and pain management—and every person is unique—one of the most popular options is radiofrequency ablation (RFA).
This procedure is fast and minimally invasive. It’s a fantastic tool to minimize lower back pain, joint pain from degeneration, and can be especially helpful for runners. The goal of many runners is to get back to their beloved sport or hobby, perhaps with modifications. However, too often surgery or long-term pain medication may be prescribed to treat common runner injuries. RFA may be an option for you to avoid surgery and sustain your running habit.
RFA works via an electric current from a radio wave. It heats the part of the body suffering nerve damage, effectively decreasing the pain signals emitting from that area. All that is required for treatment is a local anesthetic for optimal comfort, and sometimes mild sedation. In total, the procedure takes about 30 minutes. Compared to steroid injections, RFA therapy lasts longer and offers a better range of motion. The recovery time from the surgery is minimal, and many clients report that they can decrease their pain medication.
However, RFA isn’t for every runner. It keeps the nerves in the spine from sending signals to the brain, disrupting the pain signals but not “fixing” the injury. RFA is best for those who aren’t interested or able to fix the cause of the pain, but want to continue their daily habits—such as running—for up to 12 months without additional treatments. Some patients report that RFA therapy helped them avoid knee surgery, too.
Nerve damage can be debilitating, and unfortunately, it sometimes happens to runners. As summer continues to heat up, you don’t want to miss out on those early-morning sprints or long-haul outings. Contact Integrated Pain Consultants at 480-626-2552 to learn more about RFA for your running injury.