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Sympathetic Blocks 

Procedural Overview

Certain involuntary actions in our body, and during tense situations, are controlled by the sympathetic nervous system. These sympathetic nerve reactions can accelerate the heartbeat, restrict blood flow, constrict the large intestine, dilate the pupils, and raise blood pressure. The sympathetic block is administered to relieve and even diagnose the pain emanating due to causalgia, complex regional pain syndrome, and chronic pains.


The sympathetic nerves root out from our spine, and therefore, diagnosing the nerves which are causing discomfort is important. The sympathetic nerves originate from the spine in groups known as Ganglions. Doctors at Dunes Pain Specialists are experts in diagnosing the spinal region from which the sympathetic nerve pain is originating. Accordingly, the block is administered in the area, be it lumbar or stellate ganglion.


Initially, the site of the procedure is sterilized and cleaned. The physician will then give a local anesthetic to reduce any discomfort by making the region numb. It is possible that the patient might be given mild sedatives to reduce any anxiety. Finally, a solution of anesthetic drugs and steroids medication is injected directly into the nerve relieving the pain. All of this is done with the help of X-Ray guided fluoroscopy so as to precisely treat the correct ganglion.


The entire process takes less than half an hour and the patient is sent to the recovery room for observation.

After Care

Once the physician is satisfied with the patient’s condition, the person is sent home. There are very mild side effects of this therapy and they include drowsiness, voice change, temporary difficulty in swallowing, and a sensation of warmth. The doctor might recommend to refrain from strenuous physical activity, avoid driving (in case of IV sedation), and eating large bites of food. Patients might have varying experiences in the pain relief duration ranging from days to months.   


If you experience any adverse reactions like allergy, fever, swelling, or infection – call Dunes Pain Specialists. Your health is our priority!

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