A lumbar sympathetic block is often used as a leg pain treatment, or to manage malfunctions of the sympathetic nervous system (the nerves that control involuntary bodily functions, such as breathing and heartbeat). It’s also a treatment for chronic back pain and acute back pain. As the name implies, this procedure blocks or lessens pain signals that travel through the nerves to the brain.
Conditions and disorders associated with sympathetic nerve dysfunction include complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS), excessive sweating (hyperhidrosis), and spasms in the blood vessels.
During this outpatient procedure, a physician injects a numbing medication into the area surrounding the sympathetic nerves. Patients should arrange for someone to drive them home, because they may experience temporary numbness and weakness, along with drowsiness, if they receive a sedative before the procedure. Often, patients will need repeat injections over time to get the maximum pain-relieving benefits from this procedure.
Patients may experience mild soreness and bruising after this procedure but are usually able to resume normal activities the following day. Physical therapy may be recommended as part of a longer rehabilitation plan.
Medication alone is rarely effective in treating disorders of the sympathetic nervous system and chronic nerve pain. Lumbar sympathetic blocks treat nerve dysfunction at the source, producing better outcomes.
Get help for chronic nerve pain. Call Center for Pain Management to schedule your consultation: (317) 706-7246.