Image-Guided Pain Management Injections

Sep 27, 2017

A pain management injection is an image-guided injection of medication through a precisely placed, small needle. Pain management injections are either for therapeutic purposes to give pain relief or for imaging (diagnostic) purposes with contrast to gain additional knowledge about your condition.

It is understandable that patients may have a bit of anxiety about a pain management injection. “I explain to [our patients] that they’re going to be pleasantly surprised at how easy this goes,” said Mr. Nelson, a Physician Assistant at Suburban Imaging Coon Rapids.


For a spinal injection, patients lay on their stomach. Under fluoroscopic imaging, the area to be injected is marked with a small dot on the skin where the needle will be placed.

Fluoroscopy (a type of low-dose x-ray) is used to clearly view the area in real time, on a video monitor. This ensures exact placement of the needle during the procedure. “We can tell the patient with 100% certainty that we’re in the correct spot because of the camera, because of the fluoroscopic imaging, which is similar to an x-ray,” said Mr. Nelson.

From start to finish, the actual needle procedure only takes 5 to 10 minutes. “We have a very professional and caring environment for the patients,” Mr. Nelson said. “What we like to do is talk to the patient during the whole procedure. The time flies and before you know it, the injection is done.”

According to Mr. Nelson, patients often ask, ‘doing that many injections a day, don’t you get sick of it?’ His answer: “We don’t, because we feel that we are helping a patient with pain.”

Watch the video below to learn more about pain management injections and what to expect during your procedure.

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