Trigger points are involuntary tight tender spots in a contracted muscle. This creates pain and dysfunction within the muscle. They are in parts of the muscle where there is decreased circulation, increased muscle contraction, spasm and increased nerve sensitivity causing a sharp pain or a constant ache. They also can cause referred pain, or pain felt in other parts of the body.
Trigger points develop from either stress, repetitive or overuse of a muscle. When a muscle is overused or injured a contraction develops and knots occur. These annoying knots develop when individual muscle fibers are over-stimulated and unable to release their contracted state. This contraction reduces blood flow resulting in a diminished supply of oxygen and a build up of metabolic waste. The trigger point then reacts by sending out signals of pain.
Trigger point therapy commonly involves injecting small amounts of anesthetic (lidocaine) and steroid into the trigger point can help alleviate the pain.
Trigger point injections are a safe and effective way to release trigger point knots, loosen the overlying fascia, and restore unrestricted movement to the affected muscle.
The quick treatment starts with a thorough exam to determine the location and severity of your trigger points. After finding a specific trigger point, an APEX doctor cleanses the injection site, gently pulls your skin taut, and injects an anesthetic mixture directly into the trigger point, causing it to relax immediately.
While most trigger points loosen and subside after just one injection, The doctor may have to administer one or two additional injections from slightly different angles to take care of large or overly persistent trigger points.
Most people experience instant pain relief following trigger point injection therapy. To keep your muscles relaxed and pain free as the weeks and months go on, it’s important to stay active and perform any prescribed stretches or exercises as recommended.