Stellate Ganglion Block

A stellate ganglion block is done most often for people with RSD (Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy), also called CRPS (Complex Regional Pain Syndrome) of the arms. RSD may result from an impaired sympathetic nervous system (the fight or flight part of our nervous system). Typically RSD occurs after an injury, fracture, or surgery to the arm resulting in a very sensitive upper extremity with vascular changes such as edema and/or color changes and often decreased range of motion. The stellate ganglia lives in front of the lower cervical spine on each side of your voice box. Blocking the ganglia interrupts the sympathetic nervous system in an attempt to “reset” the sympathetic nervous system. With a sympathetic block, you should not experience numbness or weakness, however, you should feel a warmth in your extremity. A sympathetic block allows less pain and better movement of the extremity.

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