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Journal of Korean Neurosurgical Society 2007;41(1): 7-10.
Radiofrequency Neurotomy of the Gray Ramus Communicans for Lumbar Osteoporotic Compression Fracture.
Seok Won Kim, Chang Il Ju, Seung Myung Lee, Ho Shin
Department of Neurosurgery, School of Medicine, Chosun University, Gwangju, Korea. chosunns@hanmail.net
The aim of this study was to determine the efficacy of percutaneous radiofrequency neurotomy(RFN) of grayramus communicans nerve in patients suffering from severe low back pain due to osteoporotic compression fracture.
Twenty two patients with lumbar osteoporotic compression fracture who had intractable back pain for less than two weeks and were performed with RFN at L1-L4 from May 2004 to December 2005 were retrospectively analyzed. Clinical outcome using visual analogue scale(VAS) pain scores and modified MacNab's grade was tabulated. Complications related to the procedure were assessed.
Twenty-two female patients (age from 63 to 81 years old) were included in this study. The mean VAS score prior to RFN was 7.8, it improved to 2.6 within postoperative time of 48 hours, and the mean VAS score after 3 months was 2.8, which was significantly decreased. Eighteen of 22 patients were graded as excellent and good according to modified MacNab's criteria at final follow up. All patients recovered uneventfully, and the neurologic examination revealed no deficits. Two patients showing poor results worsened in symptom. Percutaneous was performed eventually resulting in symptom improvement. There were no significant complications related to the procedure such as sensory dysesthesia, numbness or permanent motor weakness.
RFN is safe and effective in treating the painful osteoporotic compression fracture. In patients with intractable back pain due to lumbar osteoporotic compression fracture, RFN of gray ramus communicans nerve should be considered as a treatment option prior to vertebroplasty.
Key Words: Osteoporosis; Compression fracture; Radiofrequency neurotomy; Gray ramus communicans
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