Intercostal Nerve Blocks
Intercostal nerves are located under the ribcage and send sensation signals to the brain. When an injury or illness causes irritation to these nerves, the chest and upper torso may be in pain. Although protected by the ribcage, these nerves can be damaged in surgery or from injury. They can also be impacted by viruses like shingles. As part of our interventional pain treatments at Ospina Medical, we offer intercostal nerve blocks that can relieve chest and torso pain at our clinic in New York City.
Inflammation is a common cause of nerve irritation and pain. Intercostal nerves are most commonly affected by the zoster herpes virus, the same virus that causes chicken pox. Known as shingles, this virus causes an outbreak of blisters and a rash that can be itchy and painful. Shingle outbreaks on the side of the ribcage are common, which can irritate or damage the intercostal nerves. Pain medications do little to subdue shingles nerve pain. Intercostal nerve blocks offer pain relief from shingles and other conditions that irritate these chest nerves.
Injections for Chest and Torso Pain Relief
Intercostal nerve block injections use a local anesthetic and anti-inflammatory steroid to stop nerve pain in the ribcage. Our interventional pain specialists use imaging to guide the injection to the correct position to target the affected nerves. The local anesthetic will numb the area and offer temporary pain relief. The steroid injection relieves inflammation and stops nerve pain but may take 2-3 days or longer to take effect. The treatment only requires a short office visit, and there is no downtime needed after the procedure.
If you have nerve pain in the ribcage or chest area, intercostal nerve blocks may offer relief. Contact our pain management team at Ospina Medical in Midtown Manhattan to schedule an appointment with one of our pain specialists for a consultation and treatment.