Discussions By Condition: Nerve conditions

Nerve Meds (Lyrica, etc.) vs. Nerve Block

Posted In: Nerve conditions 1 Replies
  • Posted By: Anonymous
  • December 24, 2010
  • 09:00 AM

My husband has been having severe pain that I'm pretty sure is nerve pain. However, it has not been treated as such by a doctor yet. (They keep brushing it off.) So, I am researching possible diagnoses and treatments myself so I can know what to ask the doctor and what to expect.

Anyways, my question is: What are the pros and cons of nerve blocks vs. medicines like Lyrica in terms of risks, side effects, effectiveness, etc.?

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  • First, I would encourage your husband to purse a diagnosis. Without discovering causation, it'll be like putting a Bandaid on a severed artery. I can speak from experience about nerve blocks, but not Lyrica. However, I do have a standing prescription for Tylenol with codeine, and whether that's similar to Lyrica, I can't say, but there were days I took 8-10 codeine pills and still felt like checking into an emergency room the pain was so great. So the next step, medically, is nerve blocks ...About nerve blocks: They mostly contain a mixture of lidocaine and steroid. Some people with nerve damage, got it in the first place from drugs. In my case, it was from quinolone antibiotics. The last thing I needed was a steroid, a drug with adverse effects on the central nervous system. However, I wasn't advised of this. I found that after a nerve block with steroid, the pain returned with a vengenance. Not to mention the steroid produced instant symptoms of insomnia, rapid heartbeat, confusion, and anxiety. I also had swollen, granular-type lumps at the injection site, followed by a convex, hollowed out sort of look afterwards. Lovely. All that said, the nerve blocks did result in about two weeks of pain relief, followed by the crash I mentioned. The pain doc finally listened to me on the 5th injection and agreed I may be sensitive to steroids and offered a substitute. He switched to injections of lidocaine and an opiate called Tramadol, which is common as an oral pain reliever. This was amazing because it produced pain relief but without the craziness that steroids produced. As you go forward, be aware of the sensitivity he may have to steroids and be aware that there are substitutes, although you may have to fight a bit to get it. And again, find out why this is happening to him. Has he had a nerve biopsy or conduction study? Has he been exposed to quinolones? Levaquin, Avolex, Cipro, Factive are just a few. It's on the package insert that they can cause irreversible nerve damage, which wasn't public knowledge until postmarketing reactions started coming in.Best of Health to you and your family!
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