Chronic pain can be highly debilitating, and a lot of research and resources have been dedicated to finding a cure for this problem. One such treatment is the nerve block, which is a drug or medication injection (anesthetic) delivered to one or several nerves that are causing pain. Nerve blocks deliver temporary relief from pain, typically lasting 1 to 2 weeks. Are you wondering if nerve blocks in Austin are the ideal option for you? Read on to find out:
What Are Nerve Blocks?
Nerve blocks, also called neural blockades, are medical injections designed to block the pain radiating from the nerves. They are designed to help manage or prevent several types of pain and can also be used during surgery to cause loss of feeling. In fact, epidurals are one of the most well-known nerve blocks. They are usually administered to women during childbirth to relieve labor and delivery pain.
Nerve blocks are usually delivered through needles. During an epidural, a doctor will inject the drug into a space just outside the patient’s spinal column. Nerve block treatments also involve the use of a CT scan, ultrasound, or fluoroscope to guide the injection needle. Generally, the provider uses guided images and needles to deliver anti-inflammatory or pain-relieving medication to one or several nerves.
When to Consider a Nerve Block
Generally, nerve blocks are primarily used to provide temporary, but effective relief from pain. The targeted areas are usually the arms, legs, buttocks, neck, and back. The pain itself might be caused by a wide range of conditions, such as:
- Phantom limb pain.
- Complex regional pain syndrome or chronic pain in any area of the body
- Headaches, such as migraines and cluster headaches that have failed to improve after regular, standard treatments.
- Post-herpetic neuralgia (PHN), which is long-term pain that flows a shingles flare-up.
- Trigeminal neuralgia, which is characterized by shooting pain in the lower jaw and face.
- Peripheral neuropathy
- Inflammation of the pancreas or pancreatic cancer
- Spinal stenosis. This is a condition that causes narrowing in the spaces in your spinal column.
- Physical injuries affecting the nerves
- Neck pain
- Chronic regional pain syndrome
- Arthritis pain
- Back pain
- Trigeminal neuralgia or face pain
Other Reasons to Get Nerve Blocks
Nerve blocks are not just used to provide temporary relief from pain. In some cases, your healthcare provider may use the injections to determine the source of your pain. They will derive crucial information from your body’s response to the injections that could help repair the damaged nerves.
Who Does Not Qualify for Nerve Blocks?
You might not quality for nerve block treatments if you have:
- A bleeding disorder or are currently on anticoagulants.
- An infection at the injection site
- Past neural problems in the nerve area being injected
Nerve damage or irritation is responsible for a wide range of pain-related conditions. If you have been diagnosed with chronic pain and would like to explore nerve blocks as a treatment option, contact Republic Spine and Pain to discuss your eligibility with an expert pain-management physician. Use the online tool on our website to schedule a consultation or call our Austin, Texas office today.