What Is a Nerve Block and How Can It Help You?

March 1, 2017

What Is a Nerve Block and How Can It Help You?

What Are Nerve Blocks?

Nerve blocks work as a way of disrupting pain signals in nerves before the brain has a chance to process that pain. This is achieved by injecting a special medicine around the nerve, essentially “blocking” pain transmission.

What Does a Nerve Block Do and How Can It Help?

A nerve block can function in two ways:

  1. Diagnostic nerve blocks assist physicians in pinpointing what is causing certain pains and help to determine treatment so that they can operate accordingly.
  2. Therapeutic nerve blocks provide prolonged pain relief and prevent pain from reoccurring in the same part of the body in the future.

What Happens During a Nerve Block Procedure?

The good news is that you will most likely be able to stay awake during this operation.

A local anesthesia is used before the physician begins. Then a fluoroscope X-ray will help to gently guide the needle to the right spot. This is necessary for complete accuracy and safety. Then, pain-relieving medicine is injected into the affected nerves.

It only takes about half an hour to fully recover from the treatment, after which you’ll be dismissed to go home. A little sore sensation on the injection site of the nerve block is normal.

Outcomes of Treatment

Besides a decrease in pain, a nerve block treatment is very beneficial in helping patients with other desired goals, such as:

  • increased functional status
  • decreased opioid usage
  • increased ability to perform physical therapy
  • ability of other maintenance or preventative modalities

Good to Know

Of course, as with all medical procedures, different patients may respond differently to the treatments. Give it time; allow at least a week before experiencing full pain relief and the other benefits.

In some cases, patients require a few injections of the nerve block, with each one more anti-inflammatory than the last. This process can be beneficial in helping the pain symptoms to not return.

If you have any more questions about this and other medical and pain-related procedures, don’t hesitate to get in touch with Southside Pain Specialists and schedule a consultation today.