Types of Interventional Therapy for Nerve Pain Management


August 18, 2022

Pain is prevalent all over the world and contributes substantially to disability, morbidity, mortality, and healthcare system burden. Persistent pain over a long period of time has detrimental impact on individuals mental and physical functioning, reduce their productivity and affect their overall quality of life.  In the United States alone, over 50 million people continue to suffer from pain. Pain management results in over $635 billion dollars in costs.

Types of Nerve Pain

  • Acute – Short-term, severe, and self-limiting pain
  • Chronic – Consistent and not self-limiting pain
  • Neuropathic- Tingling, burning, shooting, and electric pain
  • Nociceptive – Localized, sharp, throbbing, and sharp pain

Interventional Nerve Pain Management Therapy

Traditionally, the use of Opioids has been used as a potent approach of both acute and chronic pain management.  Unfortunately, use of opioids has only contributed to an already existing opioids’ crisis. In 2018, over 46800 Americans died as a result of opioid overdose. Therefore, the need for a more effective and safe intervention. 

Interventional therapies have gained popularity as a non-opioid and non-pharmacologic approach for pain management. Where appropriate, interventional pain management therapies are chosen as first line therapies. Below is a brief overview of various interventional therapies that Southeast Pain & Spine Care use in pain treatment.  

Types of Interventional Therapies for Pain Management

Nerve Blocks 

Involves injection of medication onto nerves or near the nerves. The medication could include a narcotic, local anesthetic, and steroid. Various categories of nerve blocks include:

  • Peripheral nerve block
  • Medial and facet joint blocks
  • Selective nerve root block
  • Sympathetic nerve block

Epidural Steroid Injections

An epidural injection allows the placement of anti-inflammatory medication into the epidural space. They are performed in the lumbar, cervical, and thoracic spine. Perfect for disorders such as herniated disc and spinal stenosis. 

Sacroiliac Joint Injection

The sacroiliac joint is located in the lower spine just above the tailbone. Its inflammation can lead to buttock and low back pain. An injection of steroid and an anesthetic helps in relieving pain in the sacroiliac joint. 

Radiofrequency Nerve Ablation

Used to relieve pain in the facet joints. The procedure involve the use of radio waves to produce heat and direct it to a specific facet joint nerve. The heat destroys the nerve, hence relieving pain.

Patient Restrictions and Exclusion

Interventional pain management therapies are effective pain relievers. However, for safety, some patients cannot undergo a procedure that involves spinal injections. Some exclusion factors include:

  • Asthma
  • Infections
  • Allergy to medication to be injected
  • Pregnancy
  • Kidney disease
  • Severe spinal abnormality
  • Bleeding problems

At Southeast Pain & Spine Care, we focus on spine care, which includes pain management as a primary part of the treatment. Fill out the form below to contact our team. They will attend to you professionally to carefully discuss options with you.

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