Archive for "March, 2016"

Top Four Most Commonly Performed Injection Procedures for Pain

blog, Pain Management Mar 30, 2016 No Comments

Top Four Most Commonly Performed Injection Procedures for Pain | Comprehensive Pain Management Center

Some of the most common conditions that cause frequent pain include arthritis, herniated disc, scoliosis, carpal tunnel syndrome, headaches, shingles, and vertebral compression fracture. Fortunately, many interventional pain procedures can drastically reduce or cure the pain associated with these conditions. The following are some of the most common injection procedures for pain management.

Cervical Epidural Steroid Injection
Conditions such as spinal stenosis, herniated discs, and degenerative disc disease may cause pain in the arms, neck, and shoulders. Cervical epidural steroid injections will relieve these uncomfortable symptoms by reducing the inflammation of the associated nerves. This reduction in swelling is accomplished through the injection of anti-inflammatory medication into the epidural space. Depending on the severity of the pain, some patients may need as many as three cervical epidural steroid injections to provide significant relief of the symptoms.

Lumbar Sympathetic Block Procedure
A lumbar sympathetic block procedure is performed to treat many conditions including complex regional pain syndrome, chronic lower extremity pain, and chronic neuropathic pain. Once a patient is lying on his/her back, the doctor will slide a needle around the sympathetic nerves to prevent pain signals from traveling to the brain. This procedure usually requires multiple injections to completely relieve leg pain.

Peripheral Nerve Stimulation
The purpose of peripheral nerve stimulation is to treat conditions like post-surgical pain, complex regional pain syndrome, back/neck pain, and trigeminal neuralgia. By using electrical impulses from electrodes, the procedure targets the path of the painful nerve in order to disrupt the perception of pain from traveling to the brain. Peripheral nerve stimulation is typically performed in a seven-day trial under local anesthetic and intravenous sedation.

Sphenopalatine Ganglion Injection 
A doctor may perform a sphenopalatine ganglion injection to reduce acute and chronic facial and head pain. Although there are three approaches to this procedure including transnasal, transoral, and lateral, the most common method is the transnasal. The trasnasal approach consists of numbing the cheek before using a fluoroscopy to inject an anesthetic into the ganglion. Performed when a patient is lying down, the approximate length of this procedure is 15 to 30 minutes.


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Carpal Tunnel Syndrome: Cause, Symptoms & Treatment

blog, Pain Management Mar 14, 2016 No Comments

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome: Cause, Symptoms & Treatment | Comprehensive Pain Management Center

The carpal tunnel is a passageway inside of your wrist that is meant to protect the median nerve, which runs down the arm and forearm, into your hand. It can sometimes be affected by a condition known as carpal tunnel syndrome. Carpal tunnel syndrome occurs when there is excessive pressure placed on the median nerve, causing decreased function in the hands and fingers. It can become so severe that it interferes with the ability to perform even the simplest, daily tasks.

Causes of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

The cause varies from person to person. In some situations, engaging in certain actions may bring about the onset of carpal tunnel syndrome, such as working in a job that requires repetitive use of the hands. Some medical problems may cause the bones in your wrist to weaken, which may increase the risk of carpal tunnel syndrome. Medical problems that may weaken the bones, include:

  • Aging
  • Diabetes
  • Ganglion cysts
  • Gout
  • Improperly healed injuries
  • Lupus

Symptoms of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Carpal tunnel syndrome can develop over several years with no noticeable symptoms. However, when symptoms first appear they typically include tingling or burning sensations in the fingers, pain and numbness in the hand, weakness in the hand, and an inability to grasp onto objects. Carpal tunnel syndrome involves injury to the median nerve, so it affects the parts of the hand that the median nerve supplies, including:

  • The thumb
  • Index finger
  • Middle finger
  • Lower half of the ring finger

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Treatment

There are a variety of non-invasive techniques that are typically used in an attempt to treat the minor symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome, including:

  • Adjusting lifestyle and working habits
  • Resting the wrist by taking several small breaks throughout the day
  • Applying ice packs to reduce the swelling
  • Wearing a wrist splint
  • Taking over-the-counter medications to relieve pain

In cases where non-invasive forms of treatment are unsuccessful, surgery may the only option. Surgery is done to remove the pressure from the median nerve by making the carpal tunnel wider.

Maintaining good overall body healthy, avoiding bad habits and using ergonomically designed equipment may help to reduce the risk of getting this syndrome. Carpal tunnel syndrome can be extremely painful, especially if the condition has progressed. If you suspect you may have early onset of carpal tunnel syndrome, it is important to visit your family physician as soon as possible to explore non-invasive treatments, which may help to prevent worsening of the condition.

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