A lumbar sympathetic block is an injection of medication that may help relieve leg pain. This procedure is an injection that numbs branches of nerves in your lower back. It helps doctors find and treat a number of problems linked to these nerves. Usually, a series of injections is needed to treat a problem.
If you suffer from chronic regional pain syndrome and would like additional information on this painful condition, please review our chronic regional pain syndrome article. If you are considering or scheduled for a lumbar sympathetic 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.
Lumbar Sympathetic Block FAQ
Lumbar sympathetic nerves are located on both sides of the spine and can carry pain signals from the peripheral tissues back to the spinal cord. By blocking the pain signals coming from these nerves it is possible to reduce pain in the legs.
Lumbar sympathetic blocks are primarily used to treat leg pain from conditions such as: Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS), reflex sympathetic dystrophy, phantom limb pain, shingles, cancer pain, vasospastic disorder, and inoperable peripheral vascular disease
This procedure is done under X-Ray guidance while the patient is laying on their stomach. Medications are given to numb the skin. Local anesthetic (numbing medication) is injected near the lumbar sympathetic nerves with the goal of providing long lasting pain relief. The procedure generally takes 25 minutes with 20 minutes of vital sign observational time.
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