Trigger Point Injections

What are Trigger Point Injections?

Trigger points are painful areas of muscle which can cause referred pain. You may feel them under the skin as a knot. These trigger points can irritate nerves as well. Trigger point injections may be used to treat pain in some patients.

Trigger points themselves can be a primary muscle issue or can be secondary to trauma or other injuries. Injections may provide immediate relief or may take a few days to provide a full effect.

Trigger point injections can be used to treat all types of pain. This includes back pain, neck pain, shoulder pain, and leg pain. They can also be used for tension headaches, and myofascial pain.

The Procedure

The procedure involves an injection of anesthetic and steroid to the affected area. Dry needling can be done as well and can be quite effective. The whole procedure usually takes a few minutes.

Repeat injections may be necessary. After the procedure,patients may experience some soreness. Ice can be applied. Stretching may also help after the procedure.

You can receive several injections over a couple weeks, but after that they are usually limited to one session every two months.

Most patients may only need 1-2 sessions for treatment. If symptoms do not resolve, then further evaluation and treatment is warranted at that time.

How do trigger points develop?

Often injuries, strained muscles, as well as repetitive activities can cause these problems. Poor posture is also a cause in those individuals who work behind a desk in front of a computer all day.

In many cases there may be more than one tender point involved. Common areas tend to be the neck, back, and shoulders.

What are the risks of trigger point injections?

The risk for this injection is usually very small. Bleeding is the most common complication. Often this is minimal. Infection may also occur, but this is rare.

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