Radiofrequency ablation for spinal osteoid osteoma: A systematic review of safety and treatment outcomes

Navraj S. Sagoo, Ali S. Haider, Andrew L. Chen, Christopher Vannabouathong, Kylan Larsen, Ruhi Sharma, Paolo Palmisciano, Othman Bin Alamer, Matthew Igbinigie, Daniel B. Wells, Salah G. Aoun, Peter G. Passias, Shaleen Vira

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Aim: We sought to systematically assess and summarize the available literature on the clinical outcomes and complications following radiofrequency ablation (RFA) for painful spinal osteoid osteoma (OO). Methods: PubMed, Scopus, and CENTRAL databases were searched in accordance with PRISMA guidelines. Studies with available data on safety and clinical outcomes following RFA for spinal OO were included. Results: In the 14 included studies (11 retrospective; 3 prospective), 354 patients underwent RFA for spinal OO. The mean ages ranged from 16.4 to 28 years (Females = 31.3%). Lesion diameters ranged between 3 and 20 mm and were frequently seen in the posterior elements in 211/331 (64%) patients. The mean distance between OO lesions and neural elements ranged between 1.7 and 7.4 mm. The estimated pain reduction on the numerical rating scale was 6.85/10 (95% confidence intervals [95%CI] 4.67–9.04) at a 12–24-month follow-up; and 7.29/10 (95% CI 6.67–7.91) at a >24-month follow-up (range 24–55 months). Protective measures (e.g., epidural air insufflation or neuroprotective sterile water infusion) were used in 43/354 (12.1%) patients. Local tumor progression was seen in 23/354 (6.5%) patients who were then successfully re-treated with RFA or open surgical resection. Grade I-II complications such as temporary limb paresthesia and wound dehiscence were reported in 4/354 (1.1%) patients. No Grade III-V complications were reported. Conclusion: RFA demonstrated safety and clinical efficacy in most patients harboring painful spinal OO lesions. However, further prospective studies evaluating these outcomes are warranted.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number101747
JournalSurgical Oncology
StatePublished - May 2022


  • Osteoid osteoma
  • Radiofrequency ablation
  • Spine
  • Tumor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Oncology


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