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HPC | Hertfordshire Pain Consultants

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  • I wanted to write a letter to you because I'm so grateful to you and your team at the pain management clinc. After spending over 15 years with the most horrendous headaches and seeing dozens of different doctors and therapists finally you have managed to get them under control. Thanks you for taking the time to genuinely listen to me and my problems. Much appreciated.

    K. R
    Hertfordshire
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Medial Branch Block Injection to Facet Joints

What is a Medial Branch Block?
  • These injections target the nerve supplying the facet joint with local anaesthetic rather than injecting into the joint.
  • If your pain is related to facet joint arthritis you should experience significant pain relief within 15 minutes of the injection, which may last for a few hours.
  • In order to minimise placebo response, a second set of medial branch block injections are carried out 2-4 weeks afterwards.
  • If you report benefit from both sets of injections this confirms that the facet joint is a source of pain and you will be offered a radiofrequency denervation to provide long lasting relief
Before the procedure
  • Medial branch blocks are done as a day case procedure under local anaesthetic.¬†Sedation is not offered as it will affect your ability to assess the benefit immediately after the injection
  • There is no requirement to starve
  • Continue all regular medications except blood thinning medications such as clopidogrel or warfarin. (clopidogrel stop 10 days, warfarin stop 5 days)
During the procedure
  • During the procedure you will lie on your tummy.¬†
  • Local anaesthetic is injected into the skin
  • Under x-ray control needles are placed at the back of the spine ( approximately 3 per side).
  • The procedure takes about 20 minutes to perform and does cause some discomfort.
After the procedure
  • After you have had your procedure, you will need to stay with us for about 2 hours before you can go home.
  • You will be asked to record your percentage of pain relief prior to discharge
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