Sympathetic Nerve Block
A sympathetic nerve block is used to treat persistent chronic pain by blocking the transmission of the pain signals from the sympathetic nerve roots.
What is a Sympathetic Nerve Block?
The sympathetic nerves roots are located in the spinal cord but the nerve fibers extend to all major parts of the body such as muscles, glands, organs, arms, and legs.
The sympathetic nerves transmit sensory information like touch, pain, and temperature. They also regulate many processes like heart rate, respiration, perspiration, facial and body movement, and digestion. This type of block is typically performed if other methods such as pain medication or steroid injections have not been effective at relieving pain.
Conditions Treated with a Sympathetic Nerve Block
Sympathetic blocks can be used to treat many painful conditions including:
- Complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS)
- Pain in the body such as the back, head, neck, tailbone, arms, and legs.
- Pain associated with cancer and cancer treatments.
- Neuropathic pain due to tissue or nerve damage typically described as a burning or shooting pain.
Possible Side Effects of a Sympathetic Nerve Block
As with most medical procedures, there are potential risks associated with a sympathetic nerve block. Although these side effects are rather rare, it is important to discuss the following symptoms with your doctor.
- Temporary soreness around the injection site
- Bleeding at or around the injection site
- Bruising around the injection site
- A feeling of warmth, or some weakness
Why Choose Sympathetic Nerve Block for Pain Relief?
Sympathetic nerve blocks have proven to be effective at treating many types of pain for different regions of the body. The most common areas are the back, neck, head, the upper and lower arms and legs, and the tailbone. It is important to pinpoint the location that is causing the pain, this will help determine the appropriate sympathetic nerve to treat to help relieve the pain.
The sympathetic block treatment is a minimally invasive procedure that can be performed quickly. Most patients have significant improvements that can last for several months. It is a highly effective treatment option because it can target the specific nerves that are responsible for causing the pain.
Find out if Sympathetic Nerve Block Could Work for You
If you suffer from debilitating pain and have already tried other conventional treatment methods, you may be a candidate for a sympathetic nerve block. Request an appointment with one of our pain specialists located in The Woodlands to learn more about nerve blocks and to find out if it’s the right choice for you.