Trigger Point Injections

Description

Trigger point injections are used to treat trigger points and provide patients with rapid pain relief. A trigger point refers to a “knot” in the muscle characterized by the following:

  • Local and referred pain

  • Twitching

  • Stiffness

  • Decreased range of motion

Trigger points arise due to acute trauma or repeated microtrauma that puts stress on muscle fibers, resulting in “knots”. A major cause of pain and dysfunction, trigger points irritate the nerve, leading to referred pain in another part of the body. Patients may suffer from one or several trigger points throughout the body.

Trigger point injections alleviate pain by inactivating trigger points. During the procedure, a healthcare professional inserts a small needle into the trigger point and injects a local anesthetic, saline, and/or corticosteroid. The procedure lasts a few minutes and may be performed multiple times in a single visit.

Indications

Indications for trigger point injections include tender areas that cause pain in a referred pattern. Patients suffering from the following symptoms may also require trigger point injections:

  • Chronic or episodic headaches

  • Temporomandibular joint pain

  • Back pain

  • Decreased range of motion

  • Groin pain

When considering an injection, it is essential to undergo a clinical examination to confirm the presence of trigger points. However, the presence of painful tender points in typical trigger point locations may also justify an injection