Past Issue - September/October 2008 - Vol 11 Issue 5  | Index | Previous | Next | 
2008;11;669-676. Cadaveric Intervertebral Disc Temperature Mapping During Disc Biacuplasty
Cadaveric Study
Kevin Pauza, MD

BACKGROUND: Disc Biacuplasty is a procedure for treating discogenic pain through neuron ablation by heating intervertebral disc tissue using cooled, bipolar radiofrequency (RF) technology. This study demonstrates temperature profiles created by disc biacuplasty in human cadavers.

OBJECTIVE: To assess temperature profiles created by disc biacuplasty in human cadaver discs.

DESIGN: The design of the experiment is a cadaver study with temperature monitoring in the intervertebral disc during disc biacuplasty.

METHOD: Seven human cadaver discs were sectioned from 2 cadavers. Each disc was instrumented with 1 temperature sensors and 2 cooled radiofrequency probes. Correct placement was verified with the aid of fluoroscopy. The discs were then immersed in a 37C thermostatic water bath and the treatment protocol was applied. Temperatures were monitored as the discs were heated.

RESULTS: At 13 minutes, with the settings used in this study, the posterior longitudinal ligament (PLL) temperature reached 403C. The anterior disc reached 413C. The outer layer of the posterior annulus fibrosus was heated to 546C and the inner two-thirds of the posterior annulus fibrosus reached temperatures of 606C.

CONCLUSIONS: The anterior disc and PLL remained at safe temperatures below 45C while temperatures throughout the center posterior and posterolateral disc were all raised above 45C, sufficient for neural ablation.


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Pain Physician
Kevin Pauza

intervertebral disc
discogenic pain
radiofrequency ablation
disc biacuplasty