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-> Sympathetic Blocks
WHAT ARE SYMPATHETIC BLOCKS?
WHAT PATIENTS ARE CANDIDATES FOR SYMPATHETIC BLOCKS?
The sympathetic nerves/ganglions are responsible
for pain with burning, shooting and tingling properties. These are
specialized nerves that can become "fired-up" even
with the smallest injuries or no injuries at all. Most common
syndromes related to the sympathetic nerves include RSD(reflex
sympathetic dystrophy), facial pain from trigeminal neuralgia,
pancreatic cancer pain, etc. Your pain specialist can perform an
injection with local anesthetics with or without steroids to
disrupt the pain signals from these sympathetic
HOW IS THE PROCEDURE PERFORMED?
Patients with Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD),
Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS), headache, facial pain,
arm pain, abdominal pain, leg pain, sacral pain, Peripheral
Vascular Disease (PVD), Reynaud's Syndrome and neuropathy can benefit from
WILL THE PROCEDURE BE PAINFUL?
You will be given conscious sedation through an
IV (intravenous needle) inserted in your arm/hand on your
admission to the facility where the procedure will be performed.
You will be escorted to the surgical suite with the nurse and
asked to lay on your stomach for the procedure. The MD and /or
nurse will monitor your blood pressure, heart rate and
respiratory rate (breathing) during the procedure.
The physician will perform the procedure with a special x ray
machine called the fluoroscope to accurately visualize the anatomy. Then contrast dye will be injected to
enhance visualization. Finally, local anesthetics with or without steroids will
be injected to disrupt the sympathetic pain fibers and relieve
pain. Another benefit from sympathetic blocks is to increase
blood flow to the areas which can help patients who suffer from
PVD, Reynaud's Syndrome and other blood flow problems.
WHAT ARE THE RISKS AND SIDE EFFECTS FROM SYMPATHETIC BLOCKS?
Typically the sedation provided minimizes pain.
HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE FOR THE PROCEDURE TO WORK?
The most common risks are local pain from the
needles. More serious but extremely rare risks are bleeding,
infection, nerve injury, paralysis, weakness in the lower
extremities and death.
The beneficial effects are usually appreciated
immediately following the procedure.
Advanced Spine and Pain
21 Spurs Lane, Suite 240
| San Antonio, TX 78240