Trigger points can be caused by a variety of injuries and are formed when the muscle/fascia attachments (anchor areas) tear, and when the cable snaps, the fascia strings/cords in the muscle twist into a knot, causing formation of the ropey band. Repetitive motion and related micro trauma, bone fracturing, sudden strain, or a crush injury are just some examples of what can cause fascia injury leading to formation of a trigger point. Trigger points are sensitive to pressure, and they’re painful because 80% of the information that comes to your brain from your periphery is coming from the free nerve endings being squished by the knot.. and then you added more pressure.
“Myofascial” refers to muscle and fascia being one tissue. When fascia tears, contracting muscle cells twist the strings around themselves and into a knot. And then these areas are intimately intertwined with the immune system. Trigger points can be extremely painful and can last for a lifetime if they go untreated. That’s where trigger point injection treatment comes in.
What are Trigger Point Injections?
Trigger point injection treatments involve inserting a small needle into the kinks in the muscle in order to release them from the inside. This needle may or may not contain medication. There is NO PLACE for injection of corticosteroids. Dr. Blatman and his students have learned to inject these areas with gas. With a gas unlike a liquid, stuck together fibers in the ropey band can be separated, restoring blood flow to the core of the muscle. With this treatment, if pain come right back in one to two days, it is almost always your food.
Trigger point injection therapy provides fast relief for myofascial pain and other conditions, including fibromyalgia, which typically includes trigger points throughout the body. Injections promote relaxation of tensed muscles and help increase blood flow to the affected area. Increased blood flow to a site of fascial damage is thought to spur your body to heal that area, lessening pain as well as repairing damage.
Healing Your Trigger Points for Good
Take the first step towards healing by contacting Blatman Health and Wellness today to discuss trigger point injection therapy. At your first appointment, one of our trained practitioners will examine your body and locate any trigger point areas that need addressing. Often, trigger point injection treatments are best supplemented with myofascial release and physical therapy.
Trigger points can be felt as small, ropey areas of tightness where the muscle fibers are banded together. The trigger point itself is typically located at the tightest area of the ropey bands. Trigger points can cause pain, numbness, headaches, and a variety of other unpleasant sensations. Trigger point therapy is essential to heal the injury and allow the muscle system to return to a state of homeostasis.
Trigger Point Injection Therapy for Back Pain
If you are experiencing back pain, trigger point injection therapy may provide relief. A local anesthetic or saline, can be injected into trigger points along the spine, inactivating those trigger points to provide pain relief. We don’t use steroids in our trigger point injections because, even though they provide short term relief and “healing,” corticosteroids actually weaken tissue and perhaps should never be used for trigger point injections.
If you are allergic to certain medications, “dry needling” may be necessary, where the injection is made without any medicine. The needle injection itself may be enough to ease muscle contraction and reduce inflammation. But when treatment is over, the ropey bands are still present.. just softer. The flexibility of trigger point injection therapy is part of what makes it such a great option for a wide variety of patients suffering from pain.
Similar injection therapies may be effective in treating pain points in the neck, upper/central back and lower back. We often treat our back pain patients with stem cell therapies and PRP injections, usually in conjunction with massage and physical therapy.
What Do the Injections Contain?
An injection for a trigger point could contain a number of medications, or if allergies are an issue, sometimes no medications at all. Most contain either anesthetics or corticosteroids, as well as other medications. For anesthetic injection, lidocaine, procaine, prilocaine and tropisetron are common. These are used to temporarily numb the affected muscles and relieve the pain.
Corticosteroids injections contain potent anti-inflammatory medications cortisone and often cause weakening and accelerated degeneration of the injected tissue. These can also limit the dilation of blood vessels in the affected muscle and prevent the accumulation of immune cells around the infected tissue. In addition, they limit the body’s production of prostaglandin hormones that naturally cause inflammation as part of the healing process.
A Holistic Approach to Trigger Point Injection Treatments
If you’re suffering from chronic back pain, fibromyalgia trigger point pain, or pain caused by tension headaches, innate trigger point injections can prove useful in a treatment regimen for relieving your pain long-term and without pharmaceuticals. Blatman Health and Wellness Center specializes in these types of integrative, holistic treatments for chronic pain, along with a host of other non-invasive, comprehensive mind-body treatments that help patients with their pain and allow them to get back to living their best lives.