Trigger points are tender areas within skeletal muscle that may result from an
abnormality of the muscle or occur when nerves that supply muscles become irritated.
Painful Skeletal Muscle
Whatever their cause, trigger points are associated with pain and tenderness in skeletal
muscle and can be identified on physical examination as palpable, tender bands (or
cords) of muscular tissue. Pain from trigger points may be mild or severe. Although
most resolve without trigger point injection treatment or with conservative measures
such as heat, massage or myofascial release therapy, some trigger points are
persistently painful and disabling.
Trigger Point Injection Treatment of Severe Trigger Point Pain
When trigger point pain is severe and refractory to conservative measures, trigger point
injection treatment with local anesthetic — with or without added steroid — may be
helpful. Trigger points may be injected with tiny needles of variable length placed
through the skin and into the substance of the muscle.
Risk is minimal and discomfort on trigger point injections treatment can be minimized
with sedation, if necessary. Five to ten trigger points may be injected in one treatment
session, and trigger point injection treatment sessions are typically repeated at regular
intervals in series and coordinated with physical therapy.
For some trigger point injection treatment patients, trigger point pain is a recurrent,
intermittent problem that may be managed over the long term with occasional trigger
point injections treatment and a combination of conservative therapies. Other patients
respond with long-lasting benefit from a single session of trigger point injections