Genicular Artery Embolization (GAE)

Genicular artery embolization (GAE) is an interventional radiology procedure used to treat knee pain due to osteoarthritis. The procedure minimizes the flow of blood to the knee lining (synovium). Osteoarthritis causes the bones in the knee joint to rub each other, creating friction. This leads to an increased flow of blood to the knee due to inflammation. Genicular artery embolization (GAE) is a relatively new and effective minimally invasive procedure that is ideal for people with

  • Mild to severe knee osteoarthritis
  • People who have not responded to medication, injections, and therapy
  • People who are not ready to undergo partial or complete knee replacement surgery

While the procedure does not treat the underlying cartilage damage, it effectively treats the symptoms associated with knee arthritis. Additionally, unlike knee surgery, physical therapy is unnecessary after undergoing the Genicular artery embolization (GAE) procedure.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Why Choose Genicular Artery Embolization (GAE)?

It is essential to point out that while Genicular artery embolization (GAE). It is a relatively new procedure for treating osteoarthritis (OA). It is more effective than other treatments. One of the main reasons you should choose Genicular artery embolization (GAE) is that it is minimally invasive. The procedure is performed by an outpatient surgeon, allowing you to go back home the same day. Research also shows that the procedure has low risk and much faster recovery. Unlike taking drugs with numerous side effects, such as stomach upsets, the procedure has minimal side effects. Additionally, the procedure has a very high success rate, with eighty-five percent of patients treated with Genicular artery embolization (GAE) reporting significant pain and discomfort relief within the first month.

Genicular artery embolization (GAE) is an outpatient procedure performed with moderate ‘twilight’ sedation, meaning that the patient does not need to speed the night in the hospital. The surgeon usually uses x-ray imaging to make an incision in the groin to access the femoral artery. After making the incision, the surgeon will insert a catheter into the femoral artery, which carries the blood to your knee lining.

The catheter injects tiny beads into the arteries to block them and reduces blood flow to the area of inflammation. Reduced blood flow alleviates inflammation, pain, and discomfort associated with knee osteoarthritis (OA). During the procedure, the surgeon usually views the patient’s leg images in real-time, making them precise and effective. The procedure does not take long when compared to other knee surgeries. While the Genicular artery embolization (GAE) length mainly depends on the damage extent, it takes about 1-2 hours to complete the procedure.

Before the procedure, your doctor will brief you on everything you need to know about the procedure. Your doctor will ask you questions regarding your previous surgeries, current/previous medical conditions, and if you are taking any medications. If you take blood-thinning medications or products containing aspirin, the doctor will also issue instructions on discontinuing the medication before the Genicular artery embolization (GAE ) procedure.

You are advised to reach the medical facility early enough to prepare for the procedure. The doctor will ask you to remove the clothes over your knee area and to wear a gown. You will also receive sedation to reduce any discomfort or pain associated with the procedure. The procedure does not require general anesthesia, meaning you will be awake during the procedure. The sedative works to numb the affected area only. It will help if you bring a relative or friend to drive you home after the procedure. It takes time for the sedative to wear out. Of course, you would not want to drive while your leg is partly numb.

Genicular artery embolization (GAE ) procedure, meaning that you will return home the same day. Typically, you will start experiencing pain and discomfort relief in 2-3 weeks as the inflammation of the knee lining reduces. While some patients have reported pain relief almost immediately after the procedure, it is not always the case.

  1. Compared to traditional surgeries performed to treat knee osteoarthritis, Genicular artery embolization (GAE) is more efficient and safe. This procedure is minimally invasive for starters, meaning that it requires a small incision in the skin. The scar is barely visible in 1-2 months after the procedure. No one loves having scars on their feet. Unfortunately, extensive knee surgeries such as complete knee replacement leave large scars that are difficult to conceal.

    Secondly, you get to go home the same day. Knee surgeries require the use of general/local anesthesia, which takes time to wear off. You will also need to spend a night or two for doctor observation after surgery. With Genicular artery embolization (GAE), you do not need to spend the night in the medical facility. Additionally, the procedure works for everyone, including people at high risk of complications and would not want to undergo expensive knee surgeries

The doctor will monitor your blood pressure and heart rate. Some patients suffer slight pain or discomfort following the surgery, which can be managed with simple medications taken by mouth or intravenously through the cannula.

Bed rest is advisable for a short period after the procedure. Most patients are cleared to leave the hospital after 4 hours. However, if you’re in significant pain, you might want to stay for longer and get extra care.

Once discharged, expect to resume your normal activities within a few days; however, don’t drive within the first week following the procedure. Of course, you can wait for longer in case of groin discomfort and get medical care too.

After your operation or therapy, your doctor may urge a follow-up scan and checkup. This is to determine whether the operation was successful and address any changes or adverse effects you may have noticed following the treatment. Just like other varicose veins on the leg, engorged veins in the thigh, vulva, buttocks, etc., may need to be treated separately.

The enlarged veins should gradually reduce in size within a few weeks by preventing reflux in pelvic veins. Even the vulvar varicose veins should disappear. You can also seek treatment for any varices in the lower legs. Various safe treatment options can be used to rid of the condition for good. However, seek treatment for other vein varices only after dealing with pelvic vein varices to reduce the chances of the condition coming back in the future. After treatment, any symptoms you’ve been experiencing due to the vein varices should go away.

Why Pedes
Orange County?

At Pedes Orange County, we are one of the few medical facilities that offer Genicular artery embolization. The procedure is safe and effective for everyone.

With so many medical clinics cropping up here and there, we understand that choosing a health facility where you can entrust to perform new and advanced procedures such as Genicular artery embolization (GAE) is not easy. However, our results speak for themselves. Our licensed surgeon has performed numerous successful GAE procedures for our patients. Call us today and schedule your appointment! We also schedule follow-up appointments to assess your progress. Our friendly staff is also ready to assist you with questions and concerns that you may have.

Email our Genicular Artery Embolization Specialist

    What to Expect From Your Visit at Pedes OC

    You can also seek medical diagnosis and treatment to ease the pain and improve the appearance of the veins. Contact our offices to speak with an expert in pelvic venous congestion consultation and treatment services in Pedes Orange County.

    • Ultrasound
      Your treatment will begin with an ultrasound examination of your veins, arteries, or both, in your legs to diagnose the presence and extent of the disease. Your test results will be immediately available to review with the doctor.
    • Consultation

      Once we review the results of your diagnostic tests, our physicians will help you develop a plan to provide you with the best treatment for your disease.

    • Treatment

      Depending on the extent of disease in your arteries or veins, our specialists may recommend minimally invasive intervention and/or prescribe medications to help your symptoms.

    • Follow-up
      It is important to make sure that you return for every scheduled follow-up appointment to ensure that your disease is appropriately monitored. If you ever have any questions or concerns, please call or schedule a follow-up appointment with our staff.
    Call Now

    Talk to a Vascular Specialist

    Call Today