Cervical Medial-Branch Block

A cervical medial-branch block is an injection administered to diagnose and treat neck, upper-back, shoulder and facial pain, and headaches. The procedure is designed to both relieve symptoms and diagnose their source. By deadening pain signals in the medial-branch nerves (which transmit pain signals from the facet joints to the brain), it is possible to determine whether a particular facet joint (which connects two vertebra) is the source of the pain.

The Cervical Medial-Branch Block Procedure

During a cervical medial-branch nerve block procedure, an anesthetic and a corticosteroid are injected near small medial nerves connected to a specific facet joint. The anesthetic provides immediate but temporary pain relief; the corticosteroid provides long-lasting relief a few days later by reducing inflammation.

The procedure is usually performed in an outpatient surgical center. A patient is given intravenous medication to help with relaxation. The skin on the back is cleaned, and a local anesthetic is applied. The targeted area is pinpointed using X-rays and contrast dye, and a small needle is inserted near the medial-branch nerve. Once the needle is situated properly, the injection is administered. It can take as much as a week for the injection to provide full pain relief. A patient can return to work or other normal activities the next day.

Results Of A Cervical Medial-Branch Block

Results of a cervical medial-branch block vary. If the patient’s pain is cut in half (or more), it is considered diagnostically significant because it indicates that the pain is being generated through the medial nerve. If this is the case, the patient may undergo radiofrequency ablation, which is helpful for a longer time, usually between 6 months and 1 year, than the injection.

Side Effects/Risks Of A Cervical Medial-Branch Block

Common side effects of a cervical medial-branch block are pain and soreness at the injection site. And, although rare, a cervical medial-branch block does have some serious risks. They include bleeding, infection, bowel and/or bladder problems, nerve damage and sexual dysfunction.

Spine Care 901 Old Country Road Plainview, NY 11803 Phone: 833.547.7463 Fax: 516.433.1036

Our Plainview Office covers Nassau County, including the tokens Bethpage, Melville, Farmingdal, Massapequ, Copaigu, Levittown, Bellmore, Freeport, Hempstea, Garden City

SpineCare West Islip 1175 Montauk Highway Suite 6 West Islip, NY 11795 Phone: 631.422.5371 Fax: 631.893.8012

Our Main Office covers Babylon, Lindenhurst, Deer Park, Brentwood, Brightwaters, Bay Shore, Islip, Oakdale, Bohemia, Sayville, Dix Hills and Commack.

St. Catherine of Siena Medical Office Building 48 Route 25A Suite 302 Smithtown, NY 11787 Phone: 631.265.2020

Our Smithtown Office covers Stony Brook, St. James, Centereach, Mounth Saini, Commack, Hauppauge, Kings Park, Northport, Middleville, Islandia, Nesconset, Northern Brentwood and Central Islip.

SpineCare Long Island 110 East Main Street Huntington, NY 11743 Phone: 833.774.6333

Our Huntington office covers towns of Northport, Greenlawn, Huntington Stattion, Lloyd Harbor, Cold Spring Harbor, Norwich, Muttontown, Brookville, Glen Head.

SpineCare Holbrook Office 4681 Veterans Memorial Highway Holbrook, NY 11741 Phone: 833.547.7463

Our brand new Holbrook facility is opening in July 2020. It covers eastern Long Island; Medford, Farmingville, Ronkonkoma, Bohemia, Sayville, Patchogue, Brookhaven, Moriches, Riverhead, Hampton Bays, Calverton, Eastport, Manorville, Wading River, Yaphank.

SpineCare TeleMedicine TeleHealth, NY 11758 USA Phone: 833.547.7463


Our TeleHealth Platform covers both Nassau and Suffolk County.

Contact Us Today

  • * All indicated fields must be completed.
    Please include non-medical questions and correspondence only.
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.