Genicular Nerve Blocks and Ablation
Genicular Nerve Blocks and Ablation are two interventional procedures that target the genicular nerves around the knee joint. These nerves play a key role in transmitting pain signals to the brain from the knee and can be a solution to chronic knee pain
Genicular Nerve Block: This is a diagnostic and therapeutic injection of a local anesthetic, which blocks the transmission of pain signals from the knee to the brain, providing temporary relief.
Genicular Nerve Ablation: If the nerve blocks successfully relieve the pain, ablation is a subsequent treatment that uses radiofrequency energy to selectively destroy the problematic nerve, giving a more long-lasting solution.The nerves take about a year to regenerate. The procedure can be repeated after 6-12 months if needed.
What Can it Treat?
These procedures are highly effective in treating various types of chronic knee pain, including:
Osteoarthritis of the knee
Chronic post-surgical knee pain, even post total knee replacement
Injuries to the knee that have resulted in chronic pain
Degenerative joint conditions
How is it Administered?
The procedure is typically performed in the following stages:
Diagnostic Genicular Nerve Block: This involves injecting a local anesthetic near the genicular nerves to identify the exact source of pain. This procedure is done under x-ray guidance in an operating room. It can be done with or without sedation.
Radiofrequency Ablation: If the diagnostic block is successful, then the ablation is done on a different date. The ablation involves placing needles in the same location as the diagnostic block. Once the nerves are identified, thermal energy is applied to ablate (or destroy) the nerves responsible for transmitting pain.
The entire process is conducted under sterile conditions and guided by imaging using x-ray fluoroscopy for precision.
What Are the Risks?
While Genicular Nerve Blocks and Ablation is a relatively safe procedure, it’s essential to be aware of potential risks, such as:
Temporary increase in pain
If you’re tired of living with chronic knee pain and want to explore an innovative treatment option, give our office a call and schedule a consultation with Dr. Edward Rubin and his team. Together, you can assess if Genicular Nerve Blocks and Ablation is the right solution for you.