What Is a Celiac Plexus Block?

If you’ve heard of a celiac plexus block and want to know more, you’re in the right place. The celiac plexus is a bundle of nerves near the top of your abdomen, beneath the diaphragm, and behind your stomach. This bundle of nerves helps control movement and sensation in your abdomen and can be a source of significant pain if triggered or irritated.

A physician may suggest a celiac plexus block to relieve this pain. A block involves an injection of a local anesthetic directly into the affected area, numbing it for up to several hours and relieving abdominal discomfort. This procedure often provides short-term relief from chronic abdominal pain caused by conditions such as pancreatitis or cancer.

If you think that a celiac block might be helpful for the symptoms you are experiencing, don’t hesitate to discuss it with your physician. They’ll be able to discuss the risks and benefits associated with this procedure and provide guidance on alternative treatments if necessary.

What Is a Celiac Plexus Block?

A celiac plexus block is a medical procedure that might be recommended when you’ve been suffering from abdominal pain due to various conditions, such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), ulcerative colitis, pancreatitis, and gastric problems. It’s designed to relieve pain in the abdomen by numbing the nerves around the area, thus reducing discomfort.

To achieve this, the doctor will inject medications like local anesthetics directly into the celiac plexus of nerves. This is located in the abdomen near your spine. The injections soothe and numb these nerves, reducing pain or other uncomfortable sensations in your abdominal area.

The block typically works by temporarily interrupting signals sent between your brain and your abdomen so you can receive some relief from discomfort or pain. However, discussing with your doctor how long this relief will last is important, as everybody will experience different results.

Who Benefits From a Celiac Plexus Block Procedure?

If you’ve been dealing with chronic abdominal pain, it may be time to consider a Celiac Plexus Block procedure. A Celiac Plexus Block is an interventional procedure that treats chronic abdominal pain with minimal side effects, making it a tried-and-true treatment method.

So, who benefits from a Celiac Plexus Block? Here are some of the most common conditions that this procedure can treat:

  • Pancreatitis
  • Chronic pancreatic pain
  • Abdominal pain due to cancer
  • Abdominal pain due to cirrhosis of the liver

It’s important to note that this list is not exhaustive. Your symptoms may point to another condition that could be treated with a Celiac Plexus Block. That’s why it’s always best to speak with your doctor if you’re experiencing prolonged abdominal pain so they can properly assess your condition and make the best decision.

What Are the Steps Involved in a Celiac Plexus Block?

Have you ever wondered what happens during a celiac plexus block? It’s not as complicated as it might sound. Here are the steps involved in a celiac plexus block:

  • The doctor will ask you to sign a consent form, clean your skin with an antiseptic solution, and then numb it with an anesthetic.
  • The doctor will guide the needle to the celiac plexus nerves, which surround your aorta near your stomach area, using images from an X-ray or Computer Tomography (CT) scan to help them get the precise spot they need.
  • The doctor will inject a local anesthetic and steroid medication through the needle into that area of nerves. This is normally when the patient feels some relief from pain and discomfort associated with their condition.
  • After injecting the medication, nurses will monitor your vital signs should any reactions occur during or following the procedure. These vitals include blood pressure, heart rate, and temperature readings.
  • Once finished with monitoring, nurses may also give you additional medications to help with recovery and control any post-procedure pain once you leave for home.

Celiac plexus blocks are quick and relatively easy procedures that can relieve abdominal conditions such as pancreatitis or chronic abdominal pain caused by cancer or other conditions. It is a great option for those who cannot take traditional medications due to allergies or other medical considerations.

Be sure to talk to your doctor if you think this treatment might be right for you!

A celiac plexus block treats abdominal pain

What Are the Benefits of a Celiac Plexus Block Procedure?

The wonderful thing about a celiac plexus block procedure is that it can potentially provide you with relief from pain and discomfort. While results differ depending on the patient, many have found that the injections can help reduce their symptoms.

So, what are some of the benefits of this procedure?

Short-Term Relief

Patients often experience significant relief from pain, bloating, and discomfort after just 1-2 sessions. This means you can get quick relief without undergoing more drastic treatments or taking more powerful medications.

Long-Term Results

Perhaps even more impressive than the short-term relief is the long-term results from this type of procedure. Studies have shown that some patients have seen results up to six months after their last session, which is great news for anyone looking for long-term relief!

Safe and Easy Procedure

Finally, one of the best things about a celiac plexus block procedure is that it’s relatively safe and easy to do. It usually only takes a few minutes to perform, and no major risks are involved, like other treatments or surgeries. Plus, you’ll be given a local anesthetic, so you won’t feel anything during or after the procedure.

Celiac Plexus Block Drawbacks

While having a Celiac Plexus Block sounds great, there are a few drawbacks to be aware of before you decide to undergo the procedure.

Pain During Procedure

You may feel discomfort or pressure during the procedure despite being done with local anesthesia. Since a needle is used to inject an anesthetic near your spine, some patients find this pain uncomfortable.

Possible Side Effects

Like any medical procedure, potential side effects can also happen during or after your Celiac Plexus Block. These can include headaches, nausea, dizziness, vomiting, and fatigue. In addition, your doctor may run tests to ensure that the Celiac Plexus Block has not caused any damage to surrounding organs.

It’s important to know that this type of pain relief is not intended for long-term use and should only be used when necessary (such as before an upcoming surgery or treatment). It’s best to speak with your healthcare provider to determine if this pain relief will work for you.

Contact Carolina Spine and Pain Centers Today!

Ready to take the next step? If you’re around Upstate South Carolina, now’s the time to reach out. Call Carolina Spine and Pain Centers at 864-539-4549 or visit our website to check if we serve your area.

During a consultation with one of our specialists, be ready to answer whatever questions they may have about your condition, including:

  • Medical history
  • Past and current symptoms
  • The type and intensity of your pain
  • Any other treatments you’ve looked into

The specialist can determine if a Celiac Plexus Block is right for you with that information. Don’t wait another second. Talk with one of our specialists and start finding relief from your pain and discomfort.