What is the role of lumbar selective nerve root blocks (SNRBs) in pain management?

Updated: Jun 19, 2018
  • Author: Anthony H Wheeler, MD; Chief Editor: Meda Raghavendra (Raghu), MD  more...
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Lumbar selective nerve root blocks(SNRBs) can provide diagnostic information and also temporary pain relief associated with a known cause for painful nerve root compression (eg, due to structural vertebral bony and/or intervertebral disk pathology). SNRBs provide information regarding patients who have minimal or no definitive imaging findings; patients with multiple imaging abnormalities when a more accurate determination of surgical treatment levels need definition; preoperative or postoperative patients with unexplainable or complex recurrent pain; and patients with equivocal neurological examinations. These blocks can be used to reduce reflex spasm of the hip adductor muscles in patients with spasticity or paraplegia.

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