Radiofrequency Thermocoagulation of the Ganglion Impar for Coccydynia Management: Long-Term Effects
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Objective To investigate the short- and long-term effects of ganglion impar radiofrequency thermocoagulation (RFT) treatment in patients with chronic coccydynia. Methods We retrospectively analyzed the medical records of patients who underwent RFT of the ganglion impar between 2009 and 2011. Pain intensity visual numeric scale (VNS) scores and Euroqol 5D (EQ-5D) index scores were recorded pre-intervention and post-intervention at the first, sixth, and twelfth months. The differences between pre-procedural VNS scores and post-procedural VNS scores at the first, sixth, and twelfth months were evaluated. The success of the intervention was recorded as the percentage difference between the pre-intervention VNS scores and post-intervention VNS scores at the first, sixth, and twelfth months. Results The mean age of the patients, including 11 females (55%) and 8 males (45%), was 48.7 +/- 14.3 years. The average follow-up duration was 17.3 +/- 2.9 months. Statistically significant differences were observed between the pre- and post-procedure VNS scores (P < 0.0001). Improvements in VNS scores were correlated with improvements in EQ-5D index scores. Mid-term (sixth month) and long-term (twelfth month) evaluations after the intervention revealed that 67.4% and 61.1% of the patients had successful outcomes, respectively. Conclusion Our data suggested that RFT of the ganglion impar in patients with chronic coccydynia resulted in effective outcomes, and patients who responded to RFT had significantly lower post-RFT pain scores.