Anesthesiologist Questions Chronic Pain

Can local anesthesia be given to treat chronic pain?

My mother suffers from a lot of pain in her back. It seems she has tried every treatment option available, with no success. Can local anesthesia be given to treat her chronic pain?

3 Answers

It's hard to say. We use local anesthetics in the form of trigger point injections sometimes. Or, it can be in the form of a patch or cream. Really, the first thing is to understand where her pain is coming from as there are options which include nerve blocks, epidural injections, spinal cord stimulators, etc.
Local anesthetic in the form of a patch is used for back pain. Rarely does one form of treatment for this kind of pain relieve it completely. Often, multiple types of treatment such as oral medication, injections, and transdermal (through the skin) medications along with physical therapy are needed to reduce symptoms.
Lidocaine patches are prescribed for just this type of problem and are worth a try. Local anesthetic injections combined with steroids can be used for trigger point injections into tightly knotted muscles.