Nerve blockade – stopping pain signals that travel through a nerve or nerves can be an effective way of treating pain. Often, special nerves must be blocked by a special technique best known by anesthesiologists. Various medications used with nerve blocks include local anesthetics and steroids. These injections may block pain, reduce swelling, decrease muscle spasm and/or improve motion. Types of blocks include: trigger point injections. Sympathetic ganglion blocks, epidural steroid injections and others.
Pain medications – non–narcotic pain medications are the basis for treatment in non–acute or non–cancer pain. These medications include:
- Anti–inflammatory drugs (Combiflam) that help with swelling as well as relieving pain.
- Tricyclic medications have shown to reduce pain in certain conditions. These medications are also excellent sleeping aids.
- Anti–spasmodics are very helpful in many patients needing relaxation of muscles.
- Anti–seizure medications have been effective in controlling pain from damaged nerves.
Physical therapy – Referral to physical therapy for improvement of the range of motion, stretching and strengthening exercises, whirlpool, massage and other therapies might be indicated.
Surgery – On rare occasions, surgical treatment may be suggested for long term improvement.