Document Type

Original Study


Background Data: Lumbosacral radicular pain is the most common neuropathic pain and is secondary to multiple pathologies, mostly disc herniation. Despite conservative treatment, about 10% of patients still suffer from chronic pain. Previous clinical studies reported promising results of using pulsed radiofrequency (PRF) for 2 to 4 minutes. Purpose: This study aims to evaluate the efficacy and safety of (PRF) for eight minutes in managing chronic discogenic lumbosacral radicular pain. Study Design: A prospective descriptive clinical case series. Patients and Methods: This study was conducted on 30 patients with lumbosacral discogenic radicular pain diagnosed clinically and radiologically. All patients underwent PRF for corresponding dorsal root ganglia for eight minutes under fluoroscopy with 1-, 3-, and 6-month postprocedural follow-up regarding pain relief using the numerical rating scale (NRS). The patient satisfaction index (PSI) was used to assess the outcomes and responses to PRF 6 months after the procedure, and all results were analyzed. Results: The preprocedural mean NRS was 7.7, which dropped after the procedure at 1-, 3-, and 6-month follow-up to 2.7, 2.8, and 3, respectively. Therefore, the average improvement at the 6-month follow-up was 4.7, which means a 61% average decline of the mean NRS of pain intensity after PRF at the 6-month follow-up. The success of PRF, as defined by at least a 50% reduction of NRS, was 90%, 86.7%, and 80% after 1-, 3-, and 6-month follow-ups, respectively (p-value =0.001). The most important factor predicting the outcome was the degree of nerve root compression (p-value =0.002). Conclusion: Pulsed radiofrequency for eight minutes is a safe and effective minimally invasive procedure in the short-term management of chronic lumbosacral discogenic radicular pain, especially in mild and moderate nerve root compression.


dorsal root ganglia, lumbosacral radicular pain, pulsed radiofrequency