Lumbar Sympathetic Block

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.

The procedure begins with a patient resting on his/her stomach or side. The patient is then given medicine to make him/her feel relaxed. The skin and tissue at the injection site is numbed. The physician inserts a needle and carefully guides it to the sympathetic nerves. The physician typically uses an x-ray device called a “fluoroscope.” This shows a video image of the needle’s position.

Next, the physician injects medicine. It bathes the nerves. It can numb the nerves and reduce inflammation. If these nerves have been a source of pain, the medicine can relieve it.

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