Stellate Ganglion Block

This injection can both diagnose and treat pain coming from the sympathetic nerves. It is a common treatment for shingles and complex regional pain syndrome affecting the head, face, neck, or arm. Usually a series of these injections is needed to treat the problem. Patients lie on their back on the table with a special x-ray (fluoroscope) unit, and an intravenous line is started to administer medications that relax the patient. A local anesthetic numbs the skin and all the tissues down to the ganglion nerves. The physician slides the needle through the anesthetized tract. Contrast solution was injected so the physician can use an x-ray (fluoroscope) to see the painful area and confirmed the correct location of the needle tip. Next, an anesthetic solution which sometimes is mixed with an anti-inflammatory medication is injected around the ganglion nerves to block pain signals from reaching the brain. Common side effects include nasal congestion and a bloodshot, droopy eye on the side of the injection was given, as well as a hoarse voice and a warm, tingling sensation in the arm and hand. They usually disappear after several hours. If the first injection alleviates pain, more will follow over time. Pain relief usually lasts longer after each injection.