Ultrasound-Guided Injection Means Painful Nerves Are a Thing of the Past
While completing a one-year fellowship in sports medicine following residency and medical school, Dr. Jamie DelVecchio, of Precision Orthopaedic Specialties, was extensively trained in ultrasound-guided injection techniques.
One of these techniques is called nerve hydrodissection.
“The goal of the procedure is to use the ultrasound as a guide to inject fluid around a painful nerve or tendon that is impinged, freeing it from neighboring structures,” she says. “Once the entrapped nerve or tendon is released, it can move more freely and return to its normal function.”
Many of her patients who benefit from hydrodissection are post-trauma or postsurgical, with built-up scar tissue within a structure, such as a knee or hip.
Dr. DelVecchio also sees patients who suffer from carpal tunnel syndrome, a common condition that causes pain and numbness when the median nerve is compressed as it travels through the wrist into the hand.
“Carpal tunnel is more common in people who perform assembly line work, as well as diabetics,” she says. “After freeing the trapped nerve, we recommend patients take a preventive approach and wear wrist braces.”
“This outpatient procedure is done here in our office and only takes five to 10 minutes under local anesthetic,” she explains. “After I free the nerve with the injection of saline solution, the patient will start to feel relief, which gradually continues to improve over time. There are very few follow-up restrictions, just limited strenuous activity the day of the injection.”
In addition to pain reduction, she says hydrodissection of scar tissue also often increases a patient’s range of motion.
“Depending on the extent of the nerve or tendon entrapment, patients may require just one injection,” she adds. “Although hydrodissection has been around for about several years, it’s being used much more commonly the past few years thanks to studies that have indicated how effective it is.”
Dr. Jamie DelVecchio is a board-certified family medicine and sports medicine physician with fellowship training in sports medicine. Precision Orthopaedic Specialties has locations in Auburn, Beachwood, Middlefield and the main office is in Chardon at 150 Seventh Avenue, Suite 200. Call 440-285-4999 or visit PrecisionOrthopaedic.com for more information.
By Patricia Nugent