Sacral nerve root injection

Spinal injection for pain management

A sacral nerve root injection can block painful impulses sent from irritated nerves at the base of your spine (sacrum)

About nerve root injections to the base of the spine

If you have persistent back, hip or limb pain, your consultant may recommend a spinal injection to treat the pain or help pinpoint its source.

Spinal injections, including sacral nerve blocks, can reduce inflammation and numb painful nerve signals, helping to manage spinal pain and associated pain radiating into your limbs.

Need to know

  • What happens during treatment? icon plus

    Treatment is usually done under local anaesthetic, meaning you’ll be awake during the injection but the area will be numbed. You may also be given sedation to help you relax.

    You'll be asked to lie on your stomach while a hollow needed is inserted into your lower back, near the sacral nerve root. Your consultant will use an X-ray along with a nerve stimulator to help position the needle in the right location. Then a steroid solution, sometimes along with more local anaesthetic, is injected to reduce inflammation and numb the nerves.

    The procedure usually takes around 20 to 30 minutes.
  • How to prepare icon plus

    Your consultant will explain the procedure to you and answer any questions you may have. They will let you know what you need to do to prepare. It's important to tell them about any medications you're currently taking. You'll also need to arrange for someone to help you get home after your appointment, as you shouldn't drive immediately following the procedure. Like all procedures, there may be some risks and side effects involved. Your consultant will explain these to you.
  • After surgery icon plus

    After the procedure, your consultant will help you to stand. Once you're up and moving, any weakness or numbness in your legs should begin to go away.

    You'll be able to go home once you're feeling well and able to walk. Your consultant will let you know when you can get back to your usual routine, including exercise.

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This content is intended for general information only and does not replace the need for personal advice from a qualified health professional.
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