Intradiscal Electrothermal Annuloplasty Explained by Dr. Paul Lynch

Intradiscal electrothermal annuloplasty, also known as IDETs, are minimally-invasive, non-surgical treatments that are used to treat back pain originating from the intervertebral discs.

These discs are made of layers of collagen, much like the layers in an onion. The layers can tear and disc material can leak outside of the disk causing nerve irritation. Small pain fibers can grow inside of discs and cause pain with everyday activities.

This procedure involves inserting a needle into the painful disc and then applying heat through a catheter in the disc.

Before the procedure, an IV line is started so that the patient can relax as needed.

Fluoroscopy, a real time X-ray machine, is used in order to ensure proper placement of the needle. With X-ray guidance, the needle is then advanced to the targeted area until correct placement is obtained.

After the needle position is confirmed, a catheter is advanced around the inside of the disc. The temperature of the heating catheter is increased to about 195 degrees. The heat shrinks and repairs the tears in the disc wall area. Small nerve endings are also burned to make them less sensitive.

This procedure generally takes less than an hour to complete.

After the procedure, patients should obtain pain relief in the first few hours after the injection.

Check out our Intradiscal Electro-Thermal Annuloplasty page for more information.


If you’re suffering from Disc herniations, bulges, or other Disc problems contact us today to see what Regen Doctors can do for you.