What are the Different Types of Nerve Pain Treatments?

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  • Written By: M. DePietro
  • Edited By: W. Everett
  • Last Modified Date: 27 December 2019
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One of the main causes of nerve pain is peripheral neuropathy, which is caused by nerve damage. It may occur from metabolic problems, such as diabetes, or by trauma to the nerve. Nerve pain may not always be curable. Symptoms can be treated, however. There are several different nerve pain treatments including oral medications, injections, and surgery.

Nerve pain can be severe and may lead to complications, such as a decrease in quality of life. Addiction to pain medications is also a possibility. If pain persists, patients should consider seeing a physician who specializes in pain management. Pain management specialists can inform patients on all available nerve pain treatments.

Oral medications may be one of the first nerve pain treatments recommended. There are several classifications of medications doctors may prescribe. Because over-the-counter medication is considered non-addictive, it may be one of the first medications prescribed. When pain is more severe, narcotic pain medications containing operates may be needed. Because they can be addictive, they may only be prescribed if over-the-counter medications don’t work.

Other classifications of medications available for nerve pain include certain anti-seizure medication and antidepressants. Both types of medications may have an effect on the chemicals in the brain that cause people to feel pain. Depending on the oral medication given side effects may include sleepiness, loss of appetite, and nausea.


When oral medications don’t work, a nerve block may be given. During a nerve block, an anti-inflammatory medication or an anesthetic is injected into the site of the pain. The medication works by blocking pain receptors. People respond differently to nerve blocks. Some people may get permanent relief, while for others relief may only last a few weeks.

Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation is another treatment that may help reduce pain. It works by delivering a mild electric current through electrodes placed on the body. It is not a permanent cure and will need to be repeated frequently.

There are alternative nerve pain treatments for people who don’t want to take medication. Massage may help improve circulation and may reduce nerve pain. Acupuncture involves inserting several needles at various points in the body to relieve pain. Several sessions of acupuncture may be needed to reduce pain.

In some cases surgery may be recommended if other treatments do not work. Surgery may be done to treat pain from compression or trauma done to the nerve. The exact type of surgery done will often depend on the cause of the nerve pain.



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