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Thyroid RFA

Dr. Sean P. Nikravan, MD, FACE

Endocrinologists located in Newport Beach, CA

With advances in medical technology, you now have non-surgical treatment options for thyroid diseases like nodules and goiters. In Newport Beach, California, Dr. Sean P. Nikravan, MD, FACE, and the team have a state-of-the-art endocrinology practice that offers non-surgical thyroid radiofrequency ablation (RFA) treatments. Find out more about thyroid RFA and how it might benefit you by calling the office or scheduling a consultation online today.

Thyroid RFA Q&A

What is thyroid RFA?

Thyroid radiofrequency ablation (RFA) is a minimally invasive procedure that uses cutting-edge RFA technology to treat thyroid-related conditions. During the procedure, Dr. Sean P. Nikravan, MD, FACE, inserts a special electrode into the abnormal portion of the thyroid using ultrasound-guided imaging.

The electrode transmits radiofrequency energy into the thyroid, heating and destroying the tissue. 

Am I a candidate for thyroid RFA?

Dr. Sean P. Nikravan, MD, FACE, conducts a comprehensive exam to determine candidates for thyroid RFA. Only those who qualify receive a recommendation for the procedure. They most often have benign thyroid nodules.

The innovative tool treats many thyroid-related conditions, including:

  • Thyroid nodules
  • Enlarged thyroid (goiter)
  • Thyroid cancer
  • Toxic thyroid nodules

You may not be a candidate for thyroid RFA if you’re pregnant or have a cardiac arrhythmia. The endocrinologist may also not consider you a good candidate for thyroid RFA if you have a large nodule that sits too close to other vital structures like your vocal cords, nerves, or blood vessels. 

What happens during thyroid RFA?

You lie back with your neck extended during your thyroid RFA and receive a local anesthetic to prevent discomfort during the procedure. 

Then, using ultrasound-guided imaging, your endocrinologist inserts a thin probe into your thyroid nodule and transmits the radiofrequency energy. You may feel mild pain or an uncomfortable warming sensation during the procedure. Any discomfort disappears as soon as the treatment ends.

The size of your nodule determines the length of your procedure. However, most thyroid RFA treatments take 30 minutes or less. 

What can I expect after thyroid RFA?

Recovery following thyroid RFA is minimal, and you can resume most of your usual activities within 24 hours after the procedure. Dr. Sean P. Nikravan, MD, FACE, recommends you wait at least 72 hours before resuming any strenuous physical activity.

Most patients experience positive results following a thyroid RFA. For thyroid nodules, you may have a significant reduction in the size of your nodule within a month after the procedure, and the nodule may disappear altogether. 

Thyroid RFA is a minimally invasive procedure, so there’s no scarring. And, unlike other thyroid procedures, you may not need long-term thyroid medication following thyroid RFA. 

To learn more about thyroid RFA, call Dr. Sean P. Nikravan, MD, FACE, or book an appointment online today.