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Trigger Point Injection

Trigger points or areas of muscle that are painful and when palpated, feel like a band or a tight rope. A trigger point may develop as a result of a car accident/whiplash, sports injury, local inflammation, or reactive type (muscle reacting to another injury such as herniated disc).  A trigger point may be associated with muscle spasms.  Pain from myofascial origin can be localized or could refer to nearby areas.  In the neck, it may refer to the head and may cause headaches.  In the lower back, it may refer to the buttock or the hip region.  The most common areas involved include the neck and upper shoulder, lower back, and buttock region.  A myofascial trigger point is different from the Tender Point seen in "fibromyalgia". 






Trigger point injection is an outpatient sterile procedure in which the identified trigger point will be contacted with a thin needle and as result, the muscle with twitch and relax.  An anesthetic may be used at the end of the procedure. Multiple muscles may be targeted in a single treatment session.  In some cases, ultrasound is necessary to guide the needle to the proper depth.  Complications are rare but may include the following:

  • Allergic reaction to meds

  • Infection

  • Bleeding

  • Nerve Injury 

  • Temporary increase in pain

  • Pneumothorax (when performed on the chest)

Prepare for your Procedure

In high-risk patients, we may ask you to hold your anticoagulants otherwise, resume all your medications. Please let us know if you have had fevers, antibiotic treatment, any illness, or hospitalization within the last 4 weeks. You must be healthy and off all antibiotics on the day of the procedure


After the Procedure

1.  We will observe you for a few minutes before discharge
2.  You may be sore on the day of the procedure.  Apply ice and take Tylenol if need be.
3.  You can remove the Band-Aid as you get home.

4.  From the next day, apply heat and stretch the muscle 2-3 times a day for 10 days


Page is if you have any of the symptoms below (rare)


  • Sudden weakness or shortness of breath

  • Fever over 101°F within 5 days after the procedure

  • Persistent redness, increased localized pain, or discharge from the site of injection.

  • Possible allergic reaction within 5 days of the procedure

  • Significantly increased pain not responding to ice, NSAIDs, or associated with fevers

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