Who Is a Good Candidate for Nerve Blocks?
What are nerve block injections?
A nerve block injection is a medical procedure in which a local anesthetic is injected close to a specific nerve or bundle of nerves to help prevent or manage pain. A nerve block prevents the nerves from sending pain signals to the central nervous system (CNS).
Typical use of nerve blocks
Nerve blocks are most typically used to prevent or manage the following:
- Labor pains during childbirth
- Pain before, during, and after a surgery, such as a knee or joint replacement
- Cancer-related pain
- Arthritis pain
- Lower back pain
- Headaches, including migraine and occipital neuralgia
- Chronic regional pain syndrome (CRPS)
- Phantom limb pain
- Lingering pain from shingles
- Hyperhidrosis (abnormally excessive sweating)
- Raynaud’s phenomenon
Nerve blocks are also used as a diagnostic tool to identify the specific source or area of pain.
Who is not a good candidate for nerve block injections?
A physician can determine if a nerve block injection will be helpful. Individuals should not receive a nerve block injection in the following cases:
- Current infection at the injection site
- Use of anticoagulants or preexisting bleeding disorder
- Prior neural issues in the affected area
- Pain not related to a single nerve or bundle of nerves