Medial Branch Block Injection Q&A
Medial branch blocks have a wide range of therapeutic and diagnostic benefits to help address chronic pain affecting the facet joint. Facet joint inflammation can manifest for various reasons, often culminating in neck and back pain. Our board-certified pain specialist Dr. Darius Zagunis M.D. offers medial branch block injection that helps to relieve pain caused by an injured or inflamed facet joint. It specifically targets the medial branches of the spinal nerve, which are responsible for transmitting pain signals from the facet joints in the spine. By reducing your discomfort and improving your function, this treatment aims to enhance your overall quality of life. Medial branch block injections are available at San Antonio Pain Consultants. For more information, contact us or book an appointment online. We are located at 3903 Wiseman Blvd, Ste 117, San Antonio, TX 78251.
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Facet joints serve as connections between your vertebrae, and any issues in these joints can lead to persistent neck or back pain. Medial branch nerves are the delicate nerve branches responsible for the sending of pain signals from the facet joint through to the spinal cord, ultimately reaching the brain, where pain is perceived.
These nerves are essentially the messengers of pain signals from the facet joints to the brain. When you’re dealing with back pain, your provider may recommend a medial branch block as one of several diagnostic tests to pinpoint the symptoms resulting in discomfort.
During this procedure, a small amount of anesthetic is injected near a medial branch nerve to interrupt the transmission of pain messages. Typically, multiple spinal levels are addressed in a single session. It’s important to note that this procedure is primarily diagnostic in nature. If a patient experiences the appropriate duration of pain relief following the medial branch nerve block, they may become eligible for a subsequent procedure designed to provide longer-lasting pain relief.
Medial branch blocks are typically brief treatments, completed within 15 to 30 minutes, the duration depending on the number of spinal levels involved. For these procedures, a local anesthetic will be administered. Guided by X-ray imaging, a needle will be carefully directed to the medial branches.
X-ray contrast will be injected at each site to ensure precise needle placement. As part of the process involves assessing changes in your pain following the injection, your doctor might advise you not to take any pain medications prior to the procedure. The pain management specialists at San Antonio Pain Consultants will provide comprehensive instructions on preparation and what to anticipate before undergoing medial branch block injections.
If your back pain stems from facet joints, you are likely to experience pain relief shortly after the procedure. Nevertheless, medial branch blocks serve as a diagnostic or testing tool, meaning the pain relief will be temporary. In response, your doctor may recommend further treatments for more lasting pain relief.
A medial branch block serves as a therapeutic technique for pain relief or a diagnostic technique to pinpoint the origin and underlying cause of spinal discomfort. If your physician has suggested a medial branch block, it’s likely because they suspect that the pain is emanating from a facet joint. Before considering more invasive procedures, it’s imperative to confirm the facet joint is in fact the source of the pain. Facet joints play a pivotal role in regulating spinal movement, enhancing vertebral support, and maintaining stability.
Facet joint inflammation can manifest for various reasons, often culminating in neck and back pain. Chronic pain may also result from traumatic injuries, given the wide range of potential causes, diagnostic procedures such as medial branch block injections are highly beneficial.
Individuals with neck or back pain stemming from facet joint inflammation and arthritis and who have not experienced relief through conventional therapies are typically prime candidates for a medial branch block.
Frequently, these blocks are recommended when facet joint injections have been unproductive. However, this isn’t always the case, as thanks to the procedure’s simplicity and cost-effectiveness as a diagnostic tool, many patients with joint pain might receive recommendations for a medial branch block.
When it comes to how many injections a medial branch block needs, the specific number will vary on a case-by-case basis. It is common for a procedure to involve injections to several levels of the spine in one appointment.
Depending on how many joints are involved when undergoing medial branch blocks, multiple injections are required in some cases. Given the wide range of potential pain sources, it is important that the quantity of medial branch block injections, along with a comprehensive pain management plan, is tailored to the unique needs of each patient in cooperation with the pain management specialists at San Antonio Pain Consultants.
Medial branch block injections are available at San Antonio Pain Consultants. For more information, contact us or book an appointment online. We are located at 3903 Wiseman Blvd, Ste 117, San Antonio, TX 78251. We serve patients from San Antonio TX, Fair Oaks Ranch TX, Leon Valley TX, Shavano Park TX, Balcones Heights TX, Fair Oaks TX, Castroville TX, Helotes TX, Alamo Ranch TX, and surrounding areas.
Additional Services You May Need
▸ Epidural Steroid Injection
▸ Lumbar Facet Joint Block
▸ Caudal Epidural Steroid Injection
▸ Sacroiliac Joint Injection
▸ Radiofrequency Rhizotomy
▸ Selective Nerve Root Block
▸ Lumbar Sympathetic Block
▸ Spinal Cord Stimulation
▸ Cervical Facet Blocks
▸ Medial Branch Blocks
▸ Lumbar Epidural Injections
▸ Cervical Epidural Steroid Injection
▸ Occipital Nerve Blocks
▸ Stellate Ganglion Blocks
▸ Sacroiliac Joint Fusion – Sacrix
▸ Celiac Plexus Block
▸ Hypogastric Plexus Blocks and Ablation
▸ Sacroiliac Joint Ablation
▸ Knee Joint Ablation for Chronic Knee Pain
▸ Knee Viscosupplement Injections