Overview & Procedure
Trigger points are the knots in muscle that form because of stress and injury. If a trigger point is not managed appropriately, surrounding nerves may become irritated and pain will ensue. Trigger point injections are used to decrease inflammation and spasming in irritated muscles.
A patient may be eligible for multiple trigger point injections in one session. At the time of the injection, your physician will examine the area to map out the inflamed muscles and decide on the number of areas to treat (typically 4-8 spots). Next, the area(s) will be cleaned, and a thin needle will be introduced into the muscle commonly under ultrasound guidance. Once the needle is in the correct spot medication will be injected.
Immediately after the procedure, patients are sent to a separate room to recover. During this time, the patient’s vitals are monitored for any signs of an adverse reaction. After the injection patients may experience a significant reduction in their pain symptoms. This is usually due to the anesthetic, and some pain may return after the numbing medication has worn off. Pain will begin to decrease over the course of several days. Patients will be given a set of aftercare instructions before being sent home. Some of these instructions may advise patients to avoid strenuous activities, bathing in a bathtub, or taking pain medications. Patients should report any signs of a fever, infection, redness, swelling, and increased pain to their Southwest Spine and Pain Center physician immediately.