Pulsed Radiofrequency of Dorsal Root Ganglion (DRG)
Dorsal root ganglia (DRG), which contain the cell bodies of primary afferent neurons transmitting sensory information from the periphery to the central nervous system, play a key role in the pathogenesis of chronic pain syndromes caused by spinal pathology and peripheral nerve injury. The evidence supporting a primary role for the DRG in chronic pain states has led to the growing use of treatment directed at dorsal root ganglion. Pulsed radiofrequency of the dorsal root ganglion (PRF-DRG) is a potentially attractive alternative to epidural steroid injection in the treatment of chronic lumbar radicular pain. It is target-specific and avoids the use of steroids, thereby eliminating their potential side effects.
Lumbosacral radicular syndrome is characterized by a radiating pain in one or more lumbar or sacral dermatomes; it may or may not be accompanied by other radicular irritation symptoms and/or symptoms of decreased function. The annual prevalence in the general population, described as low back pain with leg pain traveling below the knee, lies between 9.9% and 25%. Also, the point prevalence (4.6–13.4%) and lifetime prevalence (1.2–43%) are very high, which means that lumbosacral radicular pain is presumably the most commonly occurring form of neuropathic pain.
Acute lumbosacral radicular pain completely or partially resolves in 60% of the patients within 12 weeks of onset. However, about 30% of the patients are still suffering from pain after 3 months to 1 year.