What Is an Occipital Nerve Block?

Occipital nerve block is a medical procedure that involves administration of a dose of medication into an area in the back of your head. It is most frequently used to diagnose and treat a type of tension headache most likely due to occipital neuralgia or an irritation of a nerve in the back of one’s head. This treatment has brought relief to many patients who suffer from pain caused by occipital tension headaches.

How quickly can I expect pain relief?

Pain relief is usually felt fairly quickly after the injection of medication. If your doctor uses a local anesthetic followed by a steroid type of medication, you can expect to feel some initial pain relief that may then dissipate when the local anesthetic has worn off (several hours later). You can then expect to feel some additional pain relief roughly 48 hours later when the steroid medication begins to take effect.