BACKGROUND: Percutaneous radiofrequency cordotomy (PRFC) involves controlled ablation of the anterolateral quadrant of the spinal cord, thereby relieving pain. Evolving from a morbid open surgery, the procedure has been modernized through the application of physiological target confirmation, well-regulated thermal ablation, and improved intraoperative imaging.
OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the utility in PRFC of a new high-resolution, portable flat-panel fluoroscopic imaging technology, the O-arm Imaging System. The O-arm allows traditional 2-dimensional fluoroscopy in addition to axial and 3-dimensional reconstructed computed tomography imaging.
METHODS: PRFC was performed using the O-arm Imaging System in 6 patients with unilateral cancer pain.
RESULTS: Patients experienced 90% to 100% initial pain relief, with 50% to 100% sustained pain relief at the time of death at 2 to 12 months. There were no complications.
CONCLUSION: Portable flat-panel fluoroscopy allows high-resolution, readily updated computed tomography and fluoroscopic image guidance during PRFC. Use of this new technology may assist neurosurgeons in providing an important analgesic intervention at centers possessing the imaging technology.
ABBREVIATIONS: AP, anteroposterior
PRFC, percutaneous radiofrequency cordotomy