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Sympathetic Nerve Block

The sympathetic nerves are located inside the vertebral column, toward the middle of the spinal cord and are part of the autonomic nervous system. This system controls things we do not thing about like blood flow, swallowing, and blinking.

There are many types of sympathetic nerve blocks, here are the common ones that we perform at iSpine Clinics: 

Stellate Ganglion Nerve Block

The stellate ganglion is part of the sympathetic nervous system that is located in your neck, on either side of your voice box.

What is a Stellate Ganglion Nerve Block?

This minimally invasive procedure is performed by our specialist using a steroid and anti-inflammatory mixture injected into or around your stellate ganglion nerves to relieve pain in the head, neck, upper arm and upper chest. It also can help increase circulation and blood supply to the arm and is performed under fluoroscopy (X-ray) guidance.

What to expect during a Stellate Ganglion Nerve Block procedure

Your pain specialist will have you lay on your back while they numb the surrounding skin with a local anesthetic. With fluoroscopic guidance, a thin needle is guided into your neck, near your voice box, where medication is administered. Usually, the procedure takes less than 30 minutes, and you can go home the same day after being monitored in the recovery room.

What to expect after a Stellate Ganglion Nerve Block procedure

Do not drive or do any rigorous activity for 24 hours after your procedure. You can return to your normal activities the next day. Some patients experience a hoarse voice for a few hours, once your voice returns to normal, you may begin to sip water through a straw and gradually work up to eating solid foods.

Pain relief is different for each patient. Some may be pain-free for days, weeks, or month and usually there is a need for multiple procedures. The relief tends to last longer with each treatment.

Lumbar/Sciatic Nerve Block

Lumbar/Sciatic nerves are located on both sides of your spine, in your lower back. A steroid medication and local anesthetic injected into or around your sciatic nerves can help reduce pain in your lower back and legs.

What Is a Sympathetic Lumbar/Sciatic Nerve Block?

This minimally invasive procedure is performed by our specialist using a steroid and anti-inflammatory mixture injected into or around your sciatic nerve to relieve lower back or leg pain (sciatica). It can be used to treat Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy, Complex Regional Pain Syndrome, Herpes Zoster infection (shingles) involving the legs, Vascular insufficiency, and Peripheral neuropathy, and is performed under fluoroscopy (X-ray) guidance.

What to expect during a Sympathetic Lumbar/Sciatic Nerve Block procedure

Your pain specialist will have you lay on your stomach while they numb the surrounding skin with a local anesthetic. With fluoroscopic guidance they insert a small needle into your back, along the outside of your spine, inject dye to confirm that medication will go to the correct spot, and then inject the steroid medication. Usually, the procedure takes less than 30 minutes, and you can go home the same day.

What to expect after a Sympathetic Lumbar/Sciatic Nerve Block procedure

Your lower back and leg may feel warm or “different,” and you may begin to feel less pain. Your leg may feel numb or weak, but this feeling will subside when the anesthetic wears off. Do not drive or do any rigorous activity for 24 hours after the procedure. You may return to your normal activities the next day.

Splanchnik Nerve Block

The splanchnic nerves are located on both sides of your spine. They carry pain information to your brain from organs in your abdomen. Blocking these nerves can help you stop feeling abdominal pain.

What Is a Splanchnik Nerve Block?

This minimally invasive procedure is performed by our specialist using a steroid and anti-inflammatory mixture injected into or around your Splanchnik nerve to reduce upper abdominal pain, commonly due to cancer or chronic pancreatitis, and is performed under fluoroscopy (X-ray) guidance.

What to expect during a Splanchnik Nerve Block procedure

Your pain specialist will have you lay on your stomach while they numb the surrounding skin with a local anesthetic. With fluoroscopic guidance they insert a small needle into your back aiming for splanchnic nerve and inject the medication. The procedure takes 45 minutes, and you go home the same day.

What to expect after a Splanchnik Nerve Block procedure

Your abdomen may feel numb or “different,” but this feeling will subside when the anesthetic wears off. Do not drive or do any rigorous activity for 24 hours after your splanchnic nerve block. You can return to your normal activities the next say and your regular diet and medications immediately.

 

 

 

 

Ilioinguinal Nerve Block

Originating from the first low back (lumbar) spinal nerve, the ilioinguinal nerve wraps above the upper ridge of the hip bone (the iliac crest) and travels down into the groin. Its fibers are distributed to the skin and muscle, providing sensation to the groin, perineum and upper inner thigh.

What Is an Ilioinguinal Nerve Block?

This minimally invasive procedure is performed by our specialist using a steroid and anti-inflammatory mixture injected into the ilioinguinal nerve and blocks the pain signal and is performed under fluoroscopy (X-ray) guidance.

What to expect during a Ilioinguinal Nerve Block procedure

Your pain specialist will have you lay on your back while they numb the surrounding skin with a local anesthetic. With fluoroscopic guidance they insert a small needle into your groin region and inject the steroid medication. The procedure takes less than 10 minutes, and you go home the same day.

What to expect after a Ilioinguinal Nerve Block procedure

Immediately after the injection, pressure is applied to the injection site to decrease the incidence of post block bruising or swelling. The patient is transferred to the recovery area for approximately 15 minutes. Patients are asked to report the percentage of pain relief and report the relief experienced during the next week by calling the clinic.

 

 

Hypogastric Plexus Nerve Block

The hypogastric plexus, nerves at the base of your spine, can transmit pain from your uterus, ovaries, prostate, or other parts of your pelvis. The HP nerve block can eliminate the transmitting of these pain signals.

What is a Hypogastric Plexus Nerve Block?

This minimally invasive procedure is performed by our specialist using a steroid and anti-inflammatory mixture injected into or around your hypogastric plexus (Superior or Inferior) to reduce pelvic and is performed under fluoroscopy (X-ray) guidance.

What to expect during a Hypogastric Plexus Nerve Block procedure

Your pain specialist will have you lay on your stomach while they numb the surrounding skin with a local anesthetic. With fluoroscopic guidance they insert needles into your back, near the hip bone, inject dye to confirm that the medication will go to the correct spot, Inject pain medication. Alcohol or phenol may also be injected to destroy the nerves in some cases. The procedure takes 30 minutes, then 30 minutes of recovery/observation, and you go home the same day.

What to expect after a Hypogastric Plexus Nerve Block procedure

Your pelvic area may feel warm or “different,” and you may begin to feel less pelvic pain. Some patients report pain relief within 30 minutes after the injection, but pain may return a few hours later when the anesthetic wears off. Longer term relief usually begins in two to three days, once the medication combined with the anesthetic begins to work.

Pain relief for each patient varies for some, the relief lasts weeks. For others, the relief lasts years. If the pain returns, you can discuss having another hypogastric plexus block with your healthcare provider.

You can continue your regular diet and medications after the procedure, but don’t drive or do any rigorous activity for 24 hours after the procedure. You can return to your normal activities the next day.

 

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