Sphenopalatine blocks are short, minimally invasive procedures that effectively treat some acute and chronic facial and head pain.

facial-pain2-headache1


The sphenopalatine ganglion, or the SPG, is a collection of nerves (sympathetic, parasympathetic, and some sensory) that lies in a bony cavity called the pterygopalatine fossa, which is deep in the mid-face.


It supplies the lacrimal gland, paranasal sinuses, glands of the mucosa of the nasal cavity and pharynx, the gingiva, and the mucous membrane and glands of the hard palate. It is not involved in feeling or movement. Sometimes after a nerve is sensitized by trauma, infection or other causes, the sympathetic activity can cause pain. Blocking the sympathetic activity by anesthetizing the SPG may stop the pain.

Sphenopalatine blocks are non-surgical procedures that can be used to diagnose the source of head and face pain. Additionally, they can be used to manage certain types of headache pain, atypical facial pain, neuralgias, and other sympathetic pain conditions.

shutterstock_241533844

The sphenopalatine ganglion has been a target for the treatment of headache pain for over 100 years.

iStock_000016727512Small

Sphenopalatine blocks can help relieve pain from quite a broad array of head and face pain syndromes, including:

acute headaches
cluster headaches
shingles
cancer pain in the head and neck
Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD)
Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS)
TMJ pain
Sluder’s Neuralgia
vasomotor rhinitis
atypical facial pain


Chronic head pain is the worst! Dr. Paez has been successfully treating head pain for many years now and finds that sphenopalatine blocks are one of the best routes towards relief.