If one or more joints are causing you pain, then it may be possible to focus treatment on them. A joint block is an injection of anaesthetic (numbing medicine) and steroid that is used to help diagnose and treat joint pain.
Joints are either small joints like the facet joints that run up and down the spine or large joints like the hip joint.
To treat them we use specialised needles to deliver local anaesthetic or steroid medication such as cortisone injections to the joint causing you pain.
If the pain goes away, then it means that the joint is the most likely source of the pain. Then longer-term interventional treatment can be focused on the joints causing your pain.
JOINT BLOCKS WE PERFORM
We use joint blocks for the following:
Temporomandibular joint pain (TMJ or jaw pain)
Shoulder joint pain
Facet joint pain of the spine in the neck, chest and lower back
Atlanto-occipital (C1/2) joint blocks
Neck pain (cervical facet joint pain)
Middle back and chest pain (thoracic facet joint pain)
Lower back pain (lumbar facet joint pain)
Hip joint pain
Sacroiliac joint pain (SI joint pain)
Sacrococcygeal joint pain
Coccyx joint pain
Knee joint pain
Feet joint pain
Ankle joint pain
Atlanto-axial joint pain
Elbow joint pain
Hand joint pain
Wrist joint pain
Almost any joint can be injected when performed by safe and experienced hands.
DID YOU KNOW?
Joint injections may be performed to help diagnose whether those joints are the source of pain. For example, if a joint is injected with local anaesthetic, and the pain goes away while the anaesthetic is working, it means that that joint is the most likely source of the pain. The specialist will then be able to use longer-term interventional treatment to focus on the joints causing the pain.
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Hildebrandt J. Relevance of nerve blocks in treating and diagnosing low back pain--is the quality decisive? Schmerz. 2001;15:474-83.