Radiofrequency ablation (RFA) is a less invasive procedure for treating thyroid nodules. During RFA, the doctor inserts an electrode into the nodule’s center and then applies radiofrequency energy.
This energy causes the cells in the nodule to heat up and die, shrinking the size of the nodule. Over time, the body breaks down and eliminates these dead cells, resulting in reduced symptoms and improved overall health.
When Can a Doctor Recommend RFA for Thyroid Nodules?
Doctors recommend RFA for nodules larger than 1-2 cm in size, causing symptoms such as a choking sensation, difficulty swallowing or breathing, or vocal changes. Also, it can treat nodules that have not responded to other treatments like medications or surgery. Generally, RFA is considered safe and effective for treating thyroid nodules when done by an experienced doctor.
Is RFA Suitable for Every Patient?
RFA is unsuitable for patients with large or multiple tumors as it may cause complications that can be difficult to manage. Additionally, RFA does not guarantee the complete removal of all tumor cells from a single treatment session. As such, repeat treatments may be necessary, depending on each case.
Patients should consult their doctor to determine if RFA is the best option. The risks of RFA are similar to those of other surgical procedures, including bleeding and infection. Before undergoing RFA, patients should discuss any preexisting health conditions or concerns with their doctor to create a personalized treatment plan that considers all possible risk factors.
In many cases, RFA has proven to be an effective treatment for thyroid nodules. While it does not guarantee the complete removal of tumors, it can help reduce symptoms and improve overall health. However, before this procedure, patients should discuss the potential risks with their physician and understand how this may affect them personally.