Percutaneous treatments for trigeminal neuralgia are safe, simple, and effective for achieving good pain control. Procedural risks could be minimized by using noninvasive imaging techniques to improve the placement of the radiofrequency thermocoagulation probe into the trigeminal ganglion. Positioning of a probe is crucial to maximize pain relief and to minimize unwanted side effects, such as denervation in unaffected areas. This investigation examined the use of laser speckle imaging during probe placement in an animal model.This preclinical safety study used nonhuman primates, Macaca nemestrina (pigtail monkeys), to examine whether real-time imaging of blood flow in the face during the positioning of a coagulation probe could monitor the location and guide the positioning of the probe within the trigeminal ganglion.Data from 6 experiments in 3 pigtail monkeys support the hypothesis that laser imaging is safe and improves the accuracy of probe placement.Noninvasive laser speckle imaging can be performed safely in nonhuman primates. Because improved probe placement may reduce morbidity associated with percutaneous rhizotomies, efficacy trials of laser speckle imaging should be conducted in humans.
View details for DOI 10.3171/2015.1.JNS14408
View details for Web of Science ID 000368866300023
View details for PubMedID 26274997