13 Dec Sympathetic Blocks: An Alternative to Opioids?
Have you tried pain medication like opioids without success, or are you worried about the potential dependency on these drugs? Have steroid injections in the back, knees, or neck been unsuccessful? You might be a good candidate for sympathetic blocks, a popular opioid alternative at Integrated Pain Consultants. Our sympathetic nerves start in the spinal cord and branch out in the body. Sympathetic nerves work with our nervous system and tell the brain if the body should be feeling pain, pressure, temperature, or touch.
When you’re in pain from either a chronic or acute condition, sympathetic blocks don’t stop the pain—but they do stop or lessen the body from feeling it. In this way, they work similar to pain medication. However, there are no addiction risks with sympathetic blocks. The quick procedure is a simple injection and can provide months of relief.
How Do Sympathetic Blocks Work?
The area to be treated is numbed with a topical anesthetic. Next, a corticosteroid is injected into the pain site to target the sympathetic nerve root. Sympathetic blocks are ideal for those suffering from chronic pain. Your doctor will pinpoint the nerve in charge of the area experiencing pain to re-set the spinal cord/brain connection. Some patients report no pain at all following sympathetic blocks.
This procedure is also recommended for patients who want to avoid narcotics like opioids. If you have addictive tendencies or have struggled with addiction in the past, sympathetic blocks can be a great way to avoid pain medication. As a bonus, sympathetic blocks mean avoiding nausea that’s sometimes associated with systemic opioids.
Enjoy calmer breathing with pain relief, the ability to better participate in physical therapy, and immediate improvement in mobility, lessen pain, swelling, and know exactly where the pain is stemming from with this minimally invasive procedure.
Interested in learning more about sympathetic blocks?
Do you want to wean yourself off of pain medication and enjoy quick, cost-effective alternatives for long-term pain management? Sympathetic blocks are safe, work immediately, and can be a successful part of pain management. Get in touch with Integrated Pain Consultants today to learn more about sympathetic blocks. We also invite you to learn more about Dr. Nikesh Seth and other providers including Dr. Anne-Marie Cosijns, Dr. Lisa Sparks, Dr. Michael Givens, and our team of Nurse Practitioners.