Nerve blocks don’t cure or treat any underlying condition, but they can provide pain relief. Nerve blocks are a type of interventional pain management that reduces pain by “blocking” your nerve’s ability to send pain messages to your brain.
Nerve blocks are just one type of pain management techniques offered here at Beverly Hills Migraine and Pain Management Institute. Here, Dr. Benjamin Taimoorazy highlights five conditions that nerve blocks can treat and what to expect if you receive one.
Can you benefit from a nerve block?
Nerve blocks work by targeting a specific nerve (or nerve cluster) that’s sending pain signals to the brain. If you’ve tried conservative pain management options (such as physical therapy, injections, or rest) with little to no relief, then you might benefit from a nerve block.
You might consider a nerve block if your pain is due to a compressed nerve, which can occur with herniated discs or sciatica. The following five conditions may be treated with a nerve block:
- Back pain
- Neck pain
- Headaches and migraines
Nerve blocks aren’t necessarily a standalone treatment. For example, once the nerve block reduces your pain, Dr. Taimoorazy may recommend physical therapy as well.
What to expect during your nerve block
Regardless of whether you need a nerve block for back pain or neck pain, the process is fairly similar. Nerve blocks are administered as an outpatient procedure.
Before your procedure, you’ll receive a local anesthetic to keep you comfortable. Under the guidance of an ultrasound or a fluoroscopy, Dr. Taimoorazy injects medication into a precise location on the specified nerve. The injection may include steroids and pain relief medication.
Which nerve is targeted depends on which condition you have. For example, a trigeminal nerve block is used to block a nerve on your face. Other types of nerve blocks at Beverly Hills Migraine and Pain Management Institute include medial branch block, stellate ganglion block, occipital nerve block, peripheral nerve block, and selective nerve root block.
The injection itself is quick, taking only a few minutes. Afterward, you’ll rest for about 30 minutes before going home. A friend or family member should drive you home, but you’ll likely return to normal activities the same day. Pain relief may be immediately noticeable, or it may take 1-2 days for the medication to kick into effect.
We know chronic pain can be debilitating, but remember, you’re not on this journey alone. To find out if a nerve block is right for you, call 424-302-0289 and schedule an appointment. We’re conveniently located in Beverly Hills and Encino, California. You can also request an appointment online.