Suite 3/44-46 Oxford St, Epping NSW 2121

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Pulsed Radiography

What is Pulsed Radiofrequency Procedure?

  • Pulsed radiofrequency treatment is a modified version of traditional radiofrequency procedures.
  • A heated electrical pulse is applied through a special needle targeting a nerve to reduce pain. This procedure does not destroy the nerve, but makes it less sensitive to pain therefore providing pain relief.

What is involved in Pulsed Radiofrequency Procedure?

  • Your procedure will involve you being given intravenous sedation by an anaesthetist to help you relax during the procedure.
  • It is a minimally invasive procedure that is performed in a hospital theatre or day procedure centre under specialised imaging guidance. This allows your doctor to safely place a needle near the affected nerves. A radiofrequency electrode is then inserted and the position checked by administering an electrical current.
  • You may feel tingling, tightness or pressure in the area of your usual pain and pulsing in your muscles.
  • Local anaesthetic is injected through the needle and the radiofrequency electrode is used to deliver pulsed current to the nerve adjacent to the needle.

Before your Procedure

  • Blood thinning products may be required to be stopped prior to the procedure. You will be advised when to stop taking these medications and re-start these medications by your doctor when the admission date is arranged.
  • You can still take all your other regular medications the morning of your procedure with a sip of water. Insulin dependent diabetics will most likely be at the beginning of the list. You will be required to bring your insulin with you and it may be administered to you following the procedure.
  • Hospital staff will call you the day before your procedure to advise you of your fasting and admission times.
  • You must NOT eat, drink, smoke or chew gum prior to your procedure.
  • You will be required to arrange for someone to drive you home after the procedure as you will not be able to drive for 24 hours following the procedure due to the anaesthetic you received.

 After your Procedure

  • You will spend a short time in the recovery ward before being discharged home.
  • Gentle activity and rest is recommenced for the first 24 hours post your procedure. You may then return to normal activity unless advised otherwise by your doctor or physiotherapist.
  • It is common to experience some increased pain in the days and weeks following the procedure and extra pain relief may be required.
  • You may apply cold packs to your injection site for the first 24 hours following your procedure. After this time you may apply heat packs if you prefer.
  • The skin over the treated area may feel numb for a few weeks but will return to normal.
  • You are unable to drive for 24 hours following your procedure.
  • You may return to work the day after your procedure if you are feeling well enough.
  • It may take 3-4 weeks to feel the full benefit of the procedure.


  • Prior to your pulsed radiofrequency treatment, it is strongly recommenced you have a pre-operative assessment with one of our physiotherapists. During this appointment, your physiotherapist will perform an assessment to find out about your pain and symptoms. They will discuss your procedure, set specific goals and provide you with gentle exercises and an individualised program to complete for 2 weeks post procedure.
  • You should avoid heavy lifting greater than 2kg for the first 6 weeks, excessive movement of the treated area for the first 6 weeks and stretching of the treated area for 12 weeks.
  • You will have a 2 week post procedure appointment with your physiotherapist where they will reassess your pain and provide you with a new exercise program moving forward.
  • It is important to continue with your exercises even if there is a flare-up in pain, in order to prevent stiffness, loss of muscle strength and cardiovascular fitness.

The advice above is intended as a guide and each patient should discuss specific instructions with their care team.