Focused Ultrasound Therapy
Focused ultrasound is an early-stage, noninvasive, therapeutic technology with the potential to improve the quality of life and decrease the cost of care for patients with arthritis of the sacroiliac region. This novel technology focuses beams of ultrasound energy precisely and accurately on targets deep in the body without damaging surrounding normal tissue.
How it Works
Where the beams converge, the ultrasound produces precise ablation (thermal destruction of tissue) enabling the nerves that carry painful signals from arthritis to be treated without surgery.
The primary options for treatment of sacroiliac pain include medication and surgical procedures.
For certain patients, focused ultrasound could provide a noninvasive alternative to surgery with less risk of complications – such as surgical wound healing or infection – at a lower cost. It can reach the desired target without damaging surrounding tissue and is repeatable, if necessary.
At the present time, there are no clinical trials recruiting patients for treatment of sacroiliac arthritis.
Regulatory Approval and Reimbursement
Focused ultrasound treatment for sacroiliac arthritis is not yet approved by regulatory bodies or covered by medical insurance companies.
Najafi A, Sartoretti E, Binkert CA. Sacroiliac Joint Ablation Using MR-HIFU. Cardiovasc Intervent Radiol. 2019 Jun 11. doi: 10.1007/s00270-019-02263-0. [Epub ahead of print] PMID: 31187230
Scipione R, Anzidei M, Bazzocchi A, Gagliardo C, Catalano C, Napoli A. HIFU for Bone Metastases and other Musculoskeletal Applications. Semin Intervent Radiol. 2018 Oct;35(4):261-267. doi: 10.1055/s-0038-1673363. Epub 2018 Nov 5. Review.
Kaye EA, Maybody M, Monette S, Solomon SB, Gulati A. Ablation of the sacroiliac joint using MR-guided high intensity focused ultrasound: a preliminary experiment in a swine model. J Ther Ultrasound. 2017 Jun 26;5:17. doi: 10.1186/s40349-017-0095-x. eCollection 2017.
Kaye EA, Monette S, Srimathveeravalli G, Maybody M, Solomon SB, Gulati A. MRI-guided focused ultrasound ablation of lumbar medial branch nerve: Feasibility and safety study in a swine model. Int J Hyperthermia. 2016 Nov;32(7):786-94. doi: 10.1080/02656736.2016.1197972. Epub 2016 Jul 21.