A celiac plexus block may help those with recurrent abdominal pain that is not responsive to other treatments. This procedure temporarily disrupts the nerves of the celiac plexus. These nerves branch away from your spine. They connect to the organs in your abdomen. Pain signals caused by conditions such as pancreatitis or pancreatic cancer travel through these nerves on the way to your brain. A celiac plexus block can relieve your pain.
If you suffer from cancer-related pain and would like additional information on this painful condition, please review our cancer-related pain article. If you are interested in or scheduled for a celiac plexus block and would like additional information on this interventional procedure, please review the video and frequently asked questions below. Additionally, if you have questions or concerns do not hesitate to discuss them with your physician.
Celiac Plexus Block FAQ
The celiac plexus is a network of nerves that supply your abdominal organs with sensation. By blocking the pain signals coming from this network of nerves it is possible to reduce chronic abdominal pain.
Celiac plexus blocks are primarily used to treat chronic abdominal pain from cancer, but may also be offered to patients with other disorders such as pancreatitis.
This procedure is done under X-Ray guidance while the patient is laying on their stomach. Medication to help you relax (conscious sedation), as well as medications to numb the skin are typically used. Local anesthetic (numbing medication) is injected near the celiac plexus -- a network of nerves that supply your abdominal organs with sensation, with the goal of providing pain relief for several months. The procedure generally takes 25 minutes with 20 minutes of vital sign observational time.