Is Surgery Necessary For Lower Back Pain? Pain Relief With Trigger Point Injections

Pulling The Trigger On Injections

Lower back pain is a common symptom experienced by most people at some point in life. There are various causes of lower back pain, such as muscle strains, degenerative disease, herniated discs, and sciatica. Each patient’s treatment will depend on the cause and severity of the pain. Lower back pain treatment includes home remedies, medications, trigger point injections (TPI), and surgery.

What are trigger point injections?

To help relieve myofascial pain in the lower back as well as many other parts of the body, a trigger point injection can help. Myofascial pain syndrome is a chronic condition where pressure on specific points in the muscle, often a result of repetitive movements, can lead to muscle pain. Trigger point injections are usually injections of local anesthetic with or without other substances such as steroids. The needle is directed at the trigger point in the muscle, and the medication is injected. The patient may experience some initial twitching and discomfort but should soon notice significant pain relief.

When is TPI used?

Trigger point injections are used if other conservative treatments have not successfully relieved pain in the back. Usually, TPIs are combined with physical therapy (PT) and stretching exercises for the best results. The outpatient procedure is fast, safe, and can significantly reduce pain.

Life after injection

Immediately after getting a trigger point injection, temporary numbness or discomfort around the site is possible. In this case, the doctor usually advises pain medications or ice application to the site. Complications after trigger point injections are rare. Patients can go home the same day the procedure is performed but may need to refrain from strenuous activity for a few days.

Prospective outlook

After the procedure, most patients start experiencing the positive effect of the injection after 24-72 hours. The pain relief usually lasts for about a month. If needed, the healthcare provider may recommend more injections in the future to sustain the effect achieved.

When is surgery needed?

In cases where lower back pain is relieved or reduced with TPIs, surgery is usually not necessary. However, the doctor may recommend surgery if lower back pain does not resolve with conservative treatments or trigger point injections. Additionally, if lower back pain is interfering with the ability to perform daily activities, surgery may be suggested. For many people with myofascial pain in the lower back, a trigger point injection is the perfect treatment to relieve pain quickly and safely.


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