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Trigger points are areas of tenderness under the skin that cause pain when pressed. They are usually a result of a muscle that fails to contract (or relax) forming a knot or tightness. Trigger points can cause pain by trapping nerves around the muscle. They can also cause pain in other areas due to pressure on a nerve.

What are trigger point injections?

Trigger point injections are used to apply a local anaesthetic and steroid to an inflamed area. They are usually done on a day case basis meaning you should be able to go home the day of the surgery.

We will help you get into a comfortable position to allow your consultant easy access to your trigger point(s). If you are having sedation during the procedure a tiny needle called a cannula will be inserted in the back of your hand to allow the anaesthetic to administer the sedation.

Your consultant will clean the injection area and they may apply slight pressure to the area to confirm the exact location. They will inject a local anaesthetic and may also inject a steroid. You may feel discomfort but this should ease very quickly. The trigger point will soon feel numb and heavy. This feeling will ease as well.

Although the injection takes just a few minutes, you will need to stay with us for a few hours for observation. We will monitor any side effects and confirm any weakness or numbness decreases.

Going home after trigger point injections

You will not be able to drive so please arrange for someone to drive you home when you are discharged.

Once you are home you should rest for the first few hours before gradually returning to your normal activities. Most people notice a decrease in their pain but this sometimes takes a few days. The steroid may not take effect for up to 10 days after your injection. You may have bruising or stiffness on the injection site.

You should increase your level of activity slowly while carefully monitoring your pain. In some cases patients require follow up injections.

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