Nerve blocks are a useful and increasingly popular treatment option for pain management. They involve injecting an anesthetic or anti-inflammatory medication into the body to block pain signals traveling along a nerve or group of nerves before they reach the brain, stopping or decreasing pain or inflammation in the area.
Acute Pain Therapies, a leader in pain management and care in Bellevue and the surrounding area, shares more information on how nerve blocks are administered and who can benefit from them.
Common Uses for Nerve Blocks
There are three main types of nerve blocks:
Therapeutic nerve blocks: Used to provide temporary pain relief for people who suffer from acute or chronic pain. Therapeutic nerve blocks are often used for managing post-operative pain in individuals who wish to avoid or limit taking pain medications with known side effects.
Diagnostic nerve blocks: Performed to determine sources of pain.
Prognostic nerve blocks: Used to predict the outcome of other treatments such as surgery.
How Nerve Blocks are Performed
No special preparation is needed for a nerve block procedure. Sedation medication may be used to help the patient relax during the procedure. The procedure takes a short amount of time to perform in our facility. It takes an additional 15 to 20 minutes for the numbing medicine to begin taking effect.
Using state-of-the-art imaging technology, the doctor will locate the targeted nerve or nerves. The anesthetic medication will be administered using a thin sterile needle. Depending on the target area size, number of areas being treated and severity of pain, more than one injection may be administered.
Soreness in the injection area is minor and temporary. In some cases, we may leave a tiny tube the size of a fishing wire next to the nerve we block to provide more numbing medication for an extended period of time.
To find out if nerve blocks can help manage your pain, please schedule an appointment with Acute Pain Therapies. By evaluating your pain and symptoms our team can determine the best course of treatment. Depending on your unique case, we may recommend more than one treatment option. Contact our Bellevue office by calling (425) 440-3351 or sending us an email via our contact form on our website.