What Are Trigger Point Injections?

Aug 8, 2023 | Pain Management

Chronic pain is a complex problem with a variety of possible causes. Patients often go months or even years enduring pain and trying a variety of therapies that prove to be less than effective.

One advanced treatment that is gaining popularity due to its faster and more thorough effectiveness is the trigger point injection. What are trigger point injections and how do they work? What benefits can chronic pain patients expect to receive from a trigger point injection? Are there risks involved? And where can you find a reliable and trustworthy practitioner?

Let’s explore answers to all those questions and more.

What Is Chronic Pain?

Chronic pain is persistent pain that lasts for weeks, months, or even years. It can result from a variety of conditions such as arthritis, injuries, disease, migraines, and back problems, among others. This ongoing pain can interfere with daily activities, prevent sleep, and lead to psychological distress — which can significantly affect a person’s well-being and overall quality of life.

What Are Trigger Points?

Trigger points, also known as “knots,” are tight areas within muscle tissues that cause pain. They often develop due to overuse, injury, or muscle tension related to stress. These points can cause localized pain or refer pain to other areas of the body. 

Patients commonly experience trigger points in the back and neck muscles, shoulders, and hips caused by a variety of conditions.

What Are Trigger Point Injections?

One of the most common questions we get in our pain management clinics is, “What are trigger point injections?” Trigger point injections are a form of therapy used to alleviate pain caused by trigger points. The treatment involves injecting a local anesthetic (and sometimes a corticosteroid) directly into the trigger point with a small needle to help relieve pain. The local anesthetic numbs the area, and the corticosteroid helps to reduce inflammation and pain.

Trigger point injections are typically performed by a doctor or other trained and certified healthcare professional. The procedure is usually done in a clinic or hospital setting and takes about 15 minutes or less.

The relief provided by trigger point injections can last anywhere from a few days to a few months, depending on the individual patient’s response.

Benefits of Trigger Point Injections

There are several significant benefits that chronic pain patients can experience from getting trigger point injections:

Reduction or Elimination of Pain

The main benefit is the potential for significant reduction or even complete elimination of pain at the injected site.

Improved Mobility

Pain relief often leads to improved mobility in the affected area, allowing patients to engage in physical activities — such as household chores, work, or recreational activities — with less discomfort.

Better Sleep

By reducing pain levels, these injections can help improve sleep quality — which is vital for good health.

Reduced Need for Medications

With successful trigger point injections, many patients are able to reduce their reliance on oral pain medications.

Possible Risks and Side Effects

Like any medical procedure, trigger point injections come with potential risks and side effects. These may include bleeding or pain at the injection site, infection, or temporary numbness or weakness in the injected muscle.

Discuss these risks with your healthcare provider before deciding on this treatment.

Trigger Point Injections With HPM

Hopefully, we’ve moved you from asking “What are trigger point injections?” to “Where can I get a trigger point injection?” if applicable. .

At HPM, we offer expert pain management services at clinics throughout rural America. Our dedicated team specializes in providing advanced pain relief treatments like trigger point injections, radiofrequency ablations, and nerve blocks.

If you’re experiencing chronic pain, speak with an HPM nurse or talk with your doctor and ask them whether trigger point injections could be a part of your treatment plan. You can also visit our website to find an HPM pain management clinic near you.