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Superior Hypogastric Nerve Block

The superior hypogastric plexus block is specifically designed to treat pain in the pelvic and tailbone areas. This procedure targets the nerves located in the abdominal region, including the pelvis and tailbone, where the superior hypogastric plexus is found. Blocking these nerves alleviates pain and enhances circulation in the pelvic region, bringing more oxygen and nutrients to the area. The resulting pain relief from this anesthetic can last anywhere from 1-2 hours to several hours, or even days in some cases. If successful, multiple blocks may be performed to interrupt the cycle of pain.

General Pre-Injection Instructions

  • Allergies: Inform our staff of any allergies, especially to iodine.
  • Eating: Avoid eating on the morning of the procedure if you will receive sedation.
  • Insulin: Insulin-dependent diabetics may need to adjust their morning dose.
  • Routine Medications: Continue taking regular medications such as those for high blood pressure and diabetes.
  • Blood Thinners: If you are on Coumadin or other blood thinners, notify the staff for pre-procedure planning.
  • Driving: It is generally advised to have a driver to take you home.

Superior Hypogastric Nerve Block Procedure

  1. Positioning: The patient lies on their stomach on the procedure table for optimal spine visualization.
  2. Preparation: The target area is cleaned with antibacterial soap, and a small skin area is numbed with a local anesthetic.
  3. Needle Placement: Using x-ray guidance, the physician directs a small needle near the target area for the block.
  4. Injection: A large volume of numbing medicine (local anesthetic) is injected to block the targeted nerves.

Post-Procedure Care

  • Recovery Room: The patient will recover and be asked to report any reduction in pain.
  • Temporary Effects: Some patients may experience temporary leg weakness, numbness, warmth in the leg(s), or back pain from needle insertion.
  • Resuming Activities: Normal activities can be resumed on the day of the procedure, but driving is discouraged.

By specifically targeting the superior hypogastric plexus, this procedure offers targeted relief for pelvic and tailbone pain. It is a considered option for those seeking relief from chronic discomfort in these areas.