If you are suffering from chronic pain, a specialist in pain management in Georgetown may recommend that you go for a nerve block. The procedure works by disrupting specific nerve activities. It can help in diagnosing certain forms of neuropathic pain. The procedure involves injecting chemicals or deliberately damaging or cutting a given part of a nerve. Many people have received nerve blocks without even knowing it. For instance, dentists are known to use nerve blocking agents during painful dental procedures.
Why You May Need a Nerve Block
If you have a chronic pain condition that your pain management doctor is trying to diagnose, he or she may use nerve blocks in order to pinpoint the problem area. However, other tests, such as EMG and NVC, may be necessary for the doctor to narrow down to the exact chronic nerve pain cause. Nerve blocks are also effective in treating pain that is caused by nerve compression or damage. Pain management doctors regularly make use of nerve blocks in treating neck pain or back pain resulting from spinal stenosis or herniated discs. Depending on the procedure used, nerve blocks can control pain permanently or temporarily.
Types of Nerve Blocks
There are several types of nerve blocks. Some of the most common ones include
- Local Nerve Blocks: The procedure involves the application of local anaesthetics such as lidocaine, on a given area.
- Surgical Nerve Block: This kind of nerve block involves the removal of a nerve or selectively damaging a certain part of the nerve. Surgical nerve blocks are usually done by neurosurgeons.
- Neurolytic Blocks: This type of nerve block involves the use of phenol, alcohol, or thermo-agents to treat chronic nerve pain. It is usually applied in treating severe chronic pain issues such as cancer pain.
Risks of Nerve Blocks
Unfortunately, nerve blocks are not without any risks. Even temporary never blocks have the potential to cause permanent damage to a nerve. Nerves are quite sensitive to deal with, and even a simple miscalculation can lead to devastating side-effects. Some common risks include lasting numbness, weakness, and even paralysis. In some cases, nerve blocks can irritate the nerve and lead to increased pain.
What you Can Expect After a Nerve Block
It is normal to feel temporarily sore or numb after a nerve block. You may also experience some irritation or redness in the area. However, this should fade away with time. If you have had a surgical nerve block, you may need a few days of rest, depending on the complexity of the procedure. Some pain may not go away after the treatment, but that should not be taken to imply that the treatment was not effective.
Overall, it is apparent that although nerve blocks involve some risks, they are quite effective in treating chronic nerve pain. If you are looking for a reliable pain management professional offering nerve blocks in Georgetown, TX, Republic Pain and Spine is the best pain management facility to visit.