A hypogastric block is an injection of medication that helps relieve pelvic pain located in the bladder and lower intestines, as well as the uterus, ovaries and vagina in women, and the prostate and testicles in men.
The hypogastric plexus is a group of nerves near the bottom of your spinal cord that send pain information to your brain. If you are having pains involving your colon, bladder, lower intestines, uterus/ovaries, prostate/testicles, or other parts of the pelvis, blocking these nerves from carrying the signals to your brain can help stop the pain in your pelvic area.
A hypogastric block will help reduce pelvic pain from endometriosis, irritable bowel syndrome, radiation injury and cancer of the uterus, cervix, testicle, and anus.
The hypogastric block is placed in the lower back and is performed using x-rays.
The injection typically takes less than 15 minutes and consists of a local anesthetic and a steroid medication.
Side effects of the steroid medication are rare, but some patients may experience:
- Flushed face
- Slight fever
- Water retention
- Increased appetite
- Increased heart rate
- Abdominal cramping or bloating
These effects will resolve themselves within a few days.