The cervical area of your spine has seven vertebrae. Soft discs found between the vertebrae provide cushion, stability, and control motion of your spine. If a disc tears, chemicals inside may leak out causing inflamed nerve roots and causing immense pain. A large disc tear can cause the disc to bulge, which increases the pain even more.
If you have pain in your neck or upper back when you move your head or neck, you may be suffering from cervical disc inflammation. If the pain travels to your arm when your move your head or neck, you may have nerve root inflammation.
MRIs are not always reliable on showing a torn, or leaking, disc. A nerve block injection is something that can indicate this, ultimately, getting to the source of your pain.
During this injection, a corticosteroid (anti-inflammatory medicine) is injected into the epidural space, along with a local anesthetic. It’s called a nerve block injection because the needle is positioned next to an individual nerve root and is placing medication directly along the inflamed nerve root. A selective nerve root block will determine if that specific nerve is causing your pain.
The procedure takes less than a few minutes, we will monitor your movements, and then you will be released home with a pain diary to record your daily pain. This information will help your physician determine how well the injection worked. Pain relief duration can vary depending on the extent of inflammation on your facet joint. If you are interested in learning more about this treatment, schedule an appointment today with one of our expert physicians here at Unity Spine & Joint.