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Nerve block/treatment
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Nerve block/treatment

Stenosis of the spine with Spondylitis.Had sucessful block of L5, what's next, how long will block last? Can more blocks help Spondylitis? Had C4 C5 fusion in '91, I'm 65.  Have SLE and chronic Lyme both in remission after 12 yrs. battle and quite a bit of arthritis. Always in pain including area of past surgery.  Would appreciate input, and would like to avoid surgery if possible.  Need to know the downside, if any, of my present treatment.  Thanks
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A typical lumbar sympathetic nerve block lasts for 7-10 days.  If the initial block is successful, then additional blocks are generally repeated in 7-10 days and repeated again until your pain diminishes.

Complications of the nerve block includes the following:
- Post pocedural low blood pressure. This can be treated using blood pressure drugs.
- Accidental injection of drug into the wrong spinal compartment. This causes unwanted numbing of other areas of the body.
- Headache
- Injury to internal neural tissue by needle.

Of course, there is always the possibility that the nerve block is ineffective.  If this is the case, you may want to consider a referral to a physiatrist or pain specialist to discuss a long term pain regimen if surgery is not an option.

Followup with your personal physician is essential.

This answer is not intended as and does not substitute for medical advice - the information presented is for patient education only. Please see your personal physician for further evaluation of your individual case.

Kevin, M.D.
Hi. I have been diagnosed with sacroiliitus. Not that I am questioning the diagnosis but here are some details...I am an avid runner. After a run one day 3 years ago, I had severe pain in my lower back/upper butt. To make a long story short, I was basically paralyzed with pain (and I have a very high tolerance for pain). I was sent by ambulance to the ER where they had no clue what was wrong. I eventually made it to my internal medicine doc who diagnosed me first. After weeks of physical therapy, I was able to walk and slowly run again. I then had a bone scan (now seeing a rheumatologist) which was inconclusive and it was said that I either had a degenerative joint or a stress fracture. I've been taking vioxx for over 2 years and the pain is basically managed. However, I've seen three different ortho docs (who did nothing for me) and am now seeing my rheumatologist (who is wonderful) but is vioxx the long-term answer for me? Any thoughts would be appreciated.
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