Epidural Steroid Injections
Using x-ray, a needle is placed in the epidural space and a steroid is injected. This is done when other therapies such as oral anti-inflammatory and rest have failed to decrease inflammation.
Nerve Root Blocks
This may be used to treat or diagnose your pain. Instead of the epidural space injection, specific nerve roots are targeted to get a more precise indication of the origin of the pain. Specifically, you may hear your physician speak of several types such as sympathetic, occipital, stellate ganglion, as well as others.
The Pain SpecialistRadio Frequency Lesioning (RF)
Once the source of your pain is diagnosed through nerve blocks Radio Frequency may be used to give longer pain relief than you may have experienced with medication injections alone. RF uses heat to lesion the nerve therefore making nerve conduction (pain signals) decrease.
The facet joints are located on each side of the spine and guide and restrict spinal movement. They can also be the source of pain and therefore may need medication injected to specific spaces in order to diagnose and treat the disorder.
Spinal Cord Stimulation
This procedure uses small amounts of electrical current to treat nerve pain. The current creates parasthesia, or a tingling sensation, where you normally experience pain. The first phase of the therapy is considered a "trial" and is considered successful if you experience at least a 50% reduction in pain. If you report this amount of pain relief you will be considered for a permanent implantation.
Spinal Infusion Therapy
For patients that do not respond well, or minimally, to other forms of treatment, you may be considered for a spinal "pump". This pump delivers medication directly to the spine and may be more effective than oral medications.