Its recommended by my physiatrist (?sp) (sports rehab dr.) that I have a medial nerve block is this the same a facet joint block?
I have 3 questions....how painful is this procedure?
and If it BLOCKS the pain than how will I be AWARE if the condition of my spinal disks are reinjured or further deteriorated ...since pain is the indicator of whether or not your condition has become worse.
And lastly can I take my oxycontin the morning of the procedure?
Hi, I'm no doctor and I'm going to tell you about my very very LIMITED experience with this.
I had a lateral release knee surgery a couple years back and when I awoke was in a lot of pain. They offered me a nerve block, and I said okay. Thing was, I walked gingerly to the bathroom and saw a man screaming and thrashing in his bed. I asked the nurse what he was having done, and yep...a nerve block. Turned me off right there.
Mind you I don't want to scare you, not my intention just want you to have my perspective on it. I never had it done, but I did attempt an epidural once and passed out in the process, never going through with it. I can't take big needless anywhere near my spine or nerves, the thought makes me ill.
Your Oxy's? You should be able to, but ask your doctor before you do it.
I think the medial branch blocks hurt a lot worse then the epidural spinal cord injections. I had them on both sides at several levels. It will be up to your doctor if he allows pain medication before the procedure. It is a diagnostic test and they need to see if you are a canidate for the nerve burning.
A Medial Nerve Block is what is referred to as a Facet Injection. I copied this information on it when I thought I was going to have one. Also, as I posted on your other post, you probably WILL NOT be able to take Oxycontin on the day of this procedure because of the time release element of the medication. Please check with you doctor on that.
Medial branch nerve block procedure
As with many spinal injections, medial branch blocking procedures are best performed under fluoroscopy (live x-ray) for guidance in properly targeting and placing the needle (and for avoiding nerve injury or other injury).
On the day of the injection, patients are advised to avoid driving and doing any strenuous activities, and to get plenty of rest the night before.
The injection procedure includes the following steps:
An IV line will be started so that adequate relaxation medicine can be given, as needed.
The patient lies on an x-ray table, and the skin over the area to be tested is well cleansed.
The physician treats a small area of skin with a numbing medicine (anesthetic), which may sting for a few seconds.
The physician uses x-ray guidance (fluoroscopy) to direct a very small needle over the medial branch nerves.
Several drops of contrast dye are then injected to confirm that the medicine only goes over these medial branch nerves.
Following this confirmation, a small mixture of numbing medicine (anesthetic) will then be slowly injected onto each targeted nerve.
The injection itself only takes a few minutes, but the entire procedure usually takes between fifteen and thirty minutes.
After the procedure, the patient typically remains resting on the table for twenty to thirty minutes, and then is asked to move the affected area to try to provoke the usual pain. Patients may or may not obtain pain relief in the first few hours after the injection, depending upon whether or not the medial branch nerves that were injected are carrying pain signals from the spinal joints to the brain. On occasion, patients may feel numb or have a slightly weak or odd feeling in their neck or back for a few hours after the injection.
The patient will discuss with the doctor any immediate pain relief. Ideally, patients will also record the levels of pain relief during the next week in a pain diary. A pain diary is helpful to clearly inform the treating physician of the injection results and in planning future tests and/or treatment, as needed.
I have received one nerve block in my life time and I will NEVER have it done again. Not only did it not work but I was in pain for week afterwards. I do not want to scare you either but it is painful...no kidding about it.
I was using Oxycontin at the time and was allowed to use it before the procedure. I would ask your Doctor if you could do the same. I don't know about your procedure or what meds they use so I couldn't tell you what to or not to take.
thanks u so much 4 all the replys....I'm still sitting on the fence with all these issues, afraid of addiction/tolerance with oxycontin and not liking the thoughts of this nerve block procedure either!!
I have read stories of everything from PAIN to EXCURCIATING PAIN....and not a lot of reports on it all being well worth it, most say no help at all or even worse pain following.
Sometimes too much info for me is not a good thing...than I tend to 'over think' and 'over worry'.....well I guess I will continue to sit on the fence as there is not an immediate rush.
I do have pain and I am very limited in what I can do, however I am NOT at pain levels that many of u r at!! I understand fully that when the pain gets that bad how we r than willing to try ANYTHING for relief.
thx for info and u all take care, I sure enjoy this forum and all the helpful people
I will be perfectly honest with you in that I did not get this procedure done for all of the reasons you mentioned. Once I canceled it, the doctor I was seeing at the time told me that I was going to need disc replacement surgery in three years time. Yeah right! That was six years ago.
Of all of my orthpedic problems, I have my back pain under control the best. In addition to mild streching, I use a TENS Unit and Ice and Heat along with my pain medication and it seems to be working out.
You should not be worried about addiction as long as you take your medication as prescribed and it is for legitimate pain. You may become dependent but not addicted there is a difference. We have another thread going on that right now. Your doctor will explain a plan to you to wean you off your medication should you be lucky enough to not need it anymore.
Right now you are on a relatively low dose of Oxycontin just as I am. You shouldn't be so worried, but I know how you feel because I do the same thing. Get the reassurance from your doctor about how he or she will wean you off the medication should that time come and you will feel alot better. I did.
well that helps me feel better! I agree 20 mg oxy is a relatively low dose and I understand there is a difference between dependency and addiction. Right now that low dose has my back/hip/leg pain at a manageable level....I am able to do light housework and very light work in the garden, when I get sore I stop and lay down on a heat pad.
Some days I can do more than again somedays I do not get off my heat pad....thus is life eh.....
as for needing replacement surgery after refusing the nerve blk....I'm glad for your sake it hasn't come to that! I've been told never to consider surgery as it too has a big risk as far as being in even worse condition following.....
I can't understand how a PAIN relieving procedure would eliminate the need for replacement....the nerve blk is only for pain NOT repair, I think some of these doc's just want to scare us into going ahead with THEIR plans and not always with our best interests in mind.
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