Nothing can slow you down faster than hip pain. This type of discomfort can vary in severity and occur anywhere near your hip joint, groin, outer buttocks, or upper thigh area. Unfortunately, even mild hip pain can significantly reduce your mobility and prevent you from doing the things you love to do. But it doesn’t have to.
Our team at Elite Pain Management and Recovery Centers specializes in creating treatment strategies that improve your quality of life. If you have hip pain, here’s what you need to know about nerve blocks and whether they're right for you.
Common causes of hip pain
Your hip is a ball-and-socket joint — the largest one in your body. This type of joint has a bone with a rounded surface (the ball) that moves inside a depression in another bone (the socket). Ball-and-socket joints have more freedom of movement than other joints in your body, which is why your leg can move in so many different directions.
Your hip joint is incredibly strong and durable, but it isn’t indestructible. Over time, the cartilage that helps these bones move freely against each other can wear down or become damaged. You can also overuse muscles and tendons in the area and even break bones.
Common causes of hip pain include:
- Tendon or muscle strain
- Hip labral tears
Since you can experience hip pain for so many different reasons, there isn’t a “one-size-fits-all” solution when it comes to treating your condition. However, a nerve block can temporarily relieve the pain seen with most hip issues because it targets the specific nerves causing the discomfort.
How nerve blocks work
A nerve block involves injecting an anesthetic and/or anti-inflammatory medication into the part of your body with pain. We use this targeted approach to reduce inflammation and stop nerves in the area from generating pain signals.
When we administer a nerve block, we use fluoroscopy imaging guidance to deliver your medication to the specific nerve — or group of nerves — sending the pain messages to your brain. This treatment not only relieves pain, but it can also give damaged nerves in the site a chance to heal by reducing irritation.
If you have hip pain, we can use a nerve block in two ways. It can help identify the source of your hip pain, and/or it can provide temporary pain relief for 1-2 weeks.
What to expect from a nerve block
Getting a nerve block usually takes a matter of minutes, but you can expect your entire procedure to last between 30-60 minutes. You may have temporary discomfort during your injection, but you should experience relief fairly quickly. You can typically resume regular activity the next day.
In some cases, you may notice more pain for several days after the numbing medication wears off and the anti-inflammatory medication starts to work. However, you should see significant pain relief within 2-5 days of treatment.
If you don’t have any pain relief within 10 days, it’s unlikely the injection was effective, and we might recommend more diagnostic testing.
To see if a nerve block can help with your hip pain, call one of our convenient locations or request a consultation online today.