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Investigating The Effects Of Pulsed Radiofrequency Therapy In The Blocking Of Action Potentials In Nerves

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posted on 26.10.2021, 17:26 authored by Aryan Safakish
Radiofrequency (RF) currents (pulsed or continuous mode) are used as a treatment modality for chronic pain management. This is achieved by blocking sensory nerves’ ability to propagate pain signals. In this thesis, it was proposed that pulsed RF (PRF) therapy can block action potential propagation, and that when used in clinical settings, deliver thermal doses below the threshold for
thermal damage to nerves. A neurophysiology system with stimulating and reading electrodes was used to study earthworm nerves before and after PRF therapy. It was shown that 60% of earthworms in the high-voltage-group treated with bipolar PRF experienced a block in action
potential propagation. Computer simulations of the electrical field and heating patterns were created, experimentally validated, and after determining a threshold thermal dose for nerve damage, it was shown that for C6 medial branch nerve PRF therapy the temperature at the nerve was not high enough to cause thermal damage.





Master of Science


Biomedical Physics

Granting Institution

Ryerson University

LAC Thesis Type


Thesis Advisor

Carl Kumaradas