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Procedure Overview

We understand that the anticipation of any medical procedure can cause anxiety, and in order to ease such anxiety we have provided a brief explanation of what to expect from your procedure below. Some minor injections are performed in the office, but majority of procedures will be done at a dedicated ambulatory surgical center (ASC). 

What to Expect

Location

You will be notified of location when you schedule in the office. See below.

Arrival

You will be notified of arrival time when you schedule in the office. See below.

Procedure

Information about what to expect during the procedure is discussed below.

Discharge

Information about discharge from the ASC is discussed below.

01

Location

Location

We arrange for all appropriate procedures to be performed at an ambulatory surgery center (ASC) ensuring patient safety, comfort, and convenience. Our preferred facilities are the Surgical Arts Center and Box Canyon Surgery Center, which are ASC designed and staffed to accommodate the specific requirements of interventional pain procedures. An accredited ASC provides expert physician and nursing care and is able to effectively deal with any and all medical emergencies, either on-site or upon transfer to a hospital through a pre-arranged protocol. Complications are rare, and occasionally, a patient experiences an exacerbation of a pre-existing medical problem, a reaction to a medication, or an unexpected reaction to an injection. In such cases, our patients can be confident that the ASC will provide appropriate and timely expert care.

02

Arrival

Arrival

Arrive at the ASC early with your identification and insurance cards. Once you have checked in with reception you will be escorted to a pre-procedure area where a nurse will start intravenous access and you will change clothing. You will then be escorted to a procedure room with a fluoroscopy unit (type of x-ray machine).

03

Procedure

Procedure

You will be accompanied by a nurse, surgical technician, radiology technician, and Dr. Helmi or Dr. Ruggeroli. If sedation is desired, then a registered nurse will administer this under the supervision of your physician. A separate anesthesiologist is not employed for routine procedures; however, if the procedure requires a surgical incision, then an anesthesiologist will be involved and you will receive a separate bill from the anesthesiologist.

The skin overlying the anatomic area of the procedure will be prepped and scrubbed with an antiseptic solution. The fluoroscopy unit will be used to assure the precise anatomic location of the injection. A local anesthetic will be used to anesthetize the skin and a small needle will be inserted through the skin. This needle will be directed into the correct location. Contrast will be used to confirm that the needle is correctly placed and only then will the medication be injected. During the injection, you may feel sensations called paresthesias if a nerve is in proximity to the injection site. Some injections, such as disc stimulation, may actually reproduce your typical pain. At the conclusion of the procedure, the needle will be removed and you will be returned to the recovery area. No dressings are usually required.

Post-procedure your vital signs, neurological examination, and mental capacity will be assessed immediately. The vast majority of patients leave the recovery area after about 30 minutes. If there is any problem, Dr. Ruggeroli or Dr. Helmi will be notified and appropriate treatment will be administered.

04

Discharge

Discharge

After confirming that your transportation is present, you will be escorted downstairs and helped into your vehicle.

 

Most patients do very well after the intervention. Occasionally, side-effects may occur, usually minor reactions to medications, such as nausea, headache or sedation. Rest and time usually resolve these symptoms. Some patients may experience an increase of their typical pain for a few days and it is not uncommon to have some minor pain or swelling at the site of the needle insertion. For these pains, we recommend ice and rest. Any neurological change such as weakness or loss of sensation should be reported immediately. Any problem that persists for more than 24 hours should be reported. The staff at Pain Specialists of Nevada will happily receive your call and will arrange for appropriate medical care if needed.

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