Apart from taking oral medications to alleviate the body pain associated with fibromyalgia, patients can also opt for trigger point injections(TPI) where anesthetics or corticosteroids are directly injected onto pain spots. The TPI can provide pain relief for an extended period of time which could last up to a month. However, this treatment is not without side effects…
What Are Trigger Points?
Trigger points are sensitive points on the body that trigger pain, impede motion, and increase stiffness of muscles. They are just like tight bands or knots in the soft tissue beneath the skin. There are two types of trigger points:
- Active – When you press down on these points, you will feel pain in that area only.
Latent – These points not only cause pain in the area where pressure is being exerted, but in other parts of the body as well. For example, a trigger point in the shoulders could lead to a painful back.
What Are Trigger Point Injections?
These injections soothe stiffness and provide pain relief caused by trigger points. The injection contains either anesthetics or corticosteroids and are injected directly into each trigger point, which allow muscles to lengthen and relax by “shutting down” those areas. Injections can be administered after the trigger point is located manually by massaging the skin. Although a trained physician can identify these areas, it could be tough to find out the exact point at times. This is where Needle EMG-Guided injections are a better option since they use guided imagery and massage to isolate trigger points. A monitor records the images relayed by the needle inserted into the trigger point, to give a more accurate administration.
What Are The Benefits of TPI for Fibromyalgia?
- Fast and long-lasting pain relief of joints and muscles.
- Referred pain is reduced.
- Fatigue, disability, and stiffness are lessened.
- Minimal recovery time.
A systematic review and meta-analysis of 12 randomized, controlled trials in 2013 have clearly indicated that needling causes immediate pain relief.
What Are The Side Effects of TPI?
Numbness and aches in the injection site is one of the most common side effects of TPI. These sensations will usually go away after a day and is nothing of concern. However, as of any forms of injections, one possible dangers are infection caused by improper disinfection procedures. These can cause unecessary itch, pain and discomfort in the injection site. It is important to go to trusted medical facility.
Before going for a TPI, it is important to consult and seek your doctor’s opinion to determine if you’re suitable for the treatment and the appropriate medication to be administered.