Osteoarthritis (OA) is a chronic condition of the joints that occurs most often in the knees, back and hips. Chronic knee OA is one of the most common diseases of advanced aging, affecting up to 20 million adults.
For advanced OA, surgery has been the treatment recommendation. Now a new minimally invasive procedure provides relief for those who do not see surgery as an option. Piedmont Interventional Pain Care, PA is excited to bring COOLIEF* to our patients, a technique that uses cooled radiofrequency energy to target pain-causing sensory nerves.
The ends of the bones are covered by cartilage, a firm rubbery material that acts as a cushion between bones. When joints function properly the cartilage allows them to move smoothly.
When OA sets in, the cartilage begins breaking down and the joints become swollen and painful to move. As the cartilage continues to wear out, bones may break down and pieces of bone or cartilage can chip away and float around. The joint become further inflamed. In the advanced stages of osteoarthritis the cartilage completely wears away, leaving bones rubbing against bones. The joint continues to become damaged.
Physical activity and pain/anti-inflammatory medicines can help relieve initial symptoms. OA patients may eventually find themselves looking for more impactful ways to treat symptoms and manage the disease, including surgery to repair or replace affected areas. But surgery is not an option for all. New technology brings new options, including COOLIEF*.
COOLIEF* option for treating OA – How it works
COOLIEF* Cooled RF is a non-surgical outpatient option for patients suffering from chronic knee OA. The non-invasive procedure targets the sensory nerves that cause pain using cooled radiofrequency (RF) energy. RF energy heats and cools tissue at the site of the pain. During the COOLIEF* procedure water is circulated through the device while at the same time heating nervous tissue. The combination targets pain-causing nerves without excessive heating. The treatment area is larger than conventional RF treatments. Patients feel pain relief within one to two weeks of the procedure.