Sympathetic Nerve Blocks
Sympathetic Nerve Block
What is a sympathetic nerve block and how does it help me?
- Sympathetic nervous system (SNS) is best known for its role in helping in your “fight-or-flight” response. SNS consists of stellate ganglion, splanchnic nerve, celiac plexus and superior hypogastric nerves.
- When your sympathetic nerves are irritated or injured, the blood supply to your neck, hands, feet or other areas may be affected and it can produce pain or sensory changes.
- An abnormal sympathetic nervous system perpetuates some pain conditions.
How is the procedure performed?
- Will take about 30 minutes to complete
- Will be performed under light sedation
- A local anaesthetic will be given to numb the skin of the injection site
- Medications (local anaesthetic and steroids) will then be injected into the target site with ultrasound or X-ray guidance You may experience immediate pain relief until the local anaesthetic effect wears off. The pain relief will then improve again in 2-3 days and it can last for weeks to months depending on each individual.
Am I a good candidate for a sympathetic block?
Sympathetic nerve blocks can be an effective treatment option for you if you are suffering from:
- Chronic abdominal pain
- Complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS)
- Trigeminal neuralgia (painful sensation on one side of the face)
What are the possible risks?
Sympathetic block is considered very safe and has very few risks:
- Nerve damage
- Allergic reaction
What should I expect after the procedure?
Sympathetic nerve block recovery is usually fast and easy. You may experience some pain over the injection site which can be relieved with applying some cold compress or taking prescribed medications.
Every condition is different, hence it is best to consult a specialist who is experienced in managing such conditions. Reach out to Dr Timothy Thor today.