Understanding the Different Types of Nerve Blocks

Are you suffering from chronic pain that just won’t quit? You’re not alone. At least 50 million Americans live with chronic pain, and for many pain relievers aren’t enough to provide lasting relief.  

At Boston PainCare, with offices in Waltham, Concord, and Natick, Massachusetts, our providers offer a different pain management solution to qualified patients — nerve blocks. Nerve blocks numb the nerves controlling your pain to ease your discomfort.  

But are all nerve blocks the same? Read on to learn more about the different types of nerve blocks and whether one is right for you!

What are nerve blocks?

A nerve block is a method of pain control that works by numbing the nerves believed to be activating your pain. The block interrupts the pain signals sent to your brain by injecting a substance into or around your nerves or your spine. 

Your provider at Boston PainCare may recommend a nerve block for several reasons, including:

In addition, nerve blocks are commonly used to treat chronic pain. Some people with chronic pain no longer find drugs and medications work sufficiently or cannot tolerate the side effects associated with the medications. Nerve blocks offer a way to get relief from pain.  

What are the different types of nerve blocks?

Different types of nerve blocks treat pain originating in different parts of the body. For example, pain in your face requires a different nerve block than pain in your legs. 

Doctors deliver some types of nerve blocks surgically, such as nerve blocks that block the pain from the sympathetic nervous system. They administer other nerve blocks nonsurgically, such as an epidural which blocks the feeling in the abdomen and lower extremities. 

At Boston PainCare we offer several kinds of nerve block injections. The right one for you depends on your specific condition. Here’s a closer look at the nerve blocks used at Boston PainCare:

Occipital Nerve Blocks

Nerve blocks comprising anesthetics or steroids injected into the occipital nerve at the back of your head are occipital nerve blocks. This nerve block is most often used in alleviating the pain of chronic migraines and headaches.

Peripheral Nerve Blocks

A peripheral nerve block only blocks the area of your body in which we inject the anesthetics or pain medicine. At Boston PainCare, we use peripheral nerve blocks on the major nerves of your legs to give you quick, effective relief. 

Lumbar Sympathetic Blocks

Lumbar sympathetic nerve blocks numb nerves on the sides of your spine in your lower back. These nerves, called sympathetic nerves, regulate blood flow. The block may help address pain from spasms in your blood vessels, complex regional pain syndrome, Raynaud’s syndrome, and other types of chronic pain. 

How can I learn more about nerve blocks?

The best way to learn more about nerve blocks and whether one may be the right treatment option for you is by talking to a pain management specialist. At Boston PainCare, your provider evaluates your diagnosis and symptoms to determine if a nerve block may help you experience relief. 

If you’re suffering from chronic pain and want to learn more about different nerve blocks, call the pain management specialists at the Boston PainCare office nearest you to schedule an appointment now!

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