How Effective Is Occipital Nerve Block?

Is occipital neuralgia caused by stress?

Occipital neuralgia is caused by damage to the occipital nerves, which can arise from trauma (usually concussive or cervical), physical stress on the nerve, repetitive neck contraction, flexion or extension, and/or as a result of medical complications (such as osteochondroma, a benign bone tumour)..

What happens if occipital nerve block doesn’t work?

If the occipital nerve block doesn’t work, it is likely that the pain is coming from somewhere else. We have encountered patients with cervical facet disease who have pain resembling ON.

What is the best muscle relaxer for occipital neuralgia?

What medications can you use to treat occipital neuralgia?Prescription muscle relaxants.Antiseizure drugs, such as carbamazepine (Tegretol) and gabapentin (Neurontin)Antidepressants.Nerve blocks and steroid shots. The nerve block that your doctor might do to diagnose your condition can be a short-term treatment, too.

How long do spinal nerve blocks last?

The imaging itself is painless. The effects of the injection are usually immediate. It only takes a short time for the medication to achieve pain relief. However, nerve blocks are only a temporary fix—they typically last for up to one or two weeks and then wear off as they are absorbed by your body.

How do you sleep with occipital neuralgia?

The best way to sleep with occipital neuralgia is in a position that does not place more pressure on the nerves. Following are some guidelines: Sleep on your back. Use a pillow that supports the neck and keeps the head aligned with the body (neutral position)

What are the risks and side effects of occipital nerve blocks?

Are there any side effects caused by an occipital nerve block?The most common side effect is pain at the site of injection.Other side effects include infection, bleeding, dizziness, weakness, numbness and lightheadedness. These effects are temporary and often last only six to eight hours.

Can occipital nerve block make headaches worse?

Even if the needle were to hit the nerve which would cause worse pain, the anesthetic in these injections rapidly shuts the pain signal off and so these injections rarely worsen headache pain.

How painful is an occipital nerve block?

Occipital nerve blocks are generally considered safe. However, like any medical procedure, there are some risks. The most common side effect is pain or irritation at the injection site. Some other side effects that you may experience after injection include the following.

Can a nerve block be permanent?

Most surgical nerve blocks can be considered permanent. But they are often reserved for rare cases of chronic pain when no other treatments have been successful, such as cancer pain or chronic regional pain syndrome.

What steroid is used for nerve block?

What is dexamethasone? Dexamethasone is a steroid that may reduce pain and the inflammatory response to tissue damage after surgery (heat, pain, redness and swelling).

How long does it take for occipital nerve block to work?

The local anesthetic will wear off in 4 hours. At that time, your usual level of pain may return until the steroid starts working. This can take up to 2 weeks. Pain relief from an occipital nerve block usually will last for several months, but this may vary from patient to patient.

What happens after an occipital nerve block?

After an occipital nerve block, a patient can usually drive home and return to normal daily activities the following day. The effects of the local anesthetic may wear off in a few hours, but the effects of the steroid begin to increase over the next several days.

Can occipital nerve blocks cause hair loss?

Risks and complications are rare but can include infection, nerve or blood vessel injury, and allergic reaction to medications. You may also feel dizzy for a short period of time. Sometimes, thinning of the scalp at the injection site and hair loss may also occur.

Will occipital neuralgia go away?

Prognosis. Occipital neuralgia can last for a very long time, but it may stop by itself after a while. Generally, occipital neuralgia is a long-term condition that requires treatment to lessen the pain.

Can you drive after a nerve block?

Please arrange to have someone drive you home after the nerve block, as you will not be able to drive or operate machinery for at least 24 hours after the procedure. You must be healthy on the day of your nerve block.