Last updated on August 2018

A Comparison of Dexamethasone and Triamcinolone for Ultrasound-guided Occipital C2 Nerve Blocks


Brief description of study

Greater occipital nerve (GON) injection is a commonly performed diagnostic and therapeutic procedure in headache patients. GON blocks have been shown to be effective in the treatment of a variety of headaches including occipital neuralgia, migraine, vascular headache, cluster headache, cervicogenic headache, and post-concussive headache. Local anesthetic and steroids have been successfully used for diagnostic and or therapeutic nerve pain such as lumbar radicultis with great success. Dexamethasone is a water soluble steroid, when combined with local anesthetic; it may increase the analgesia of block duration relative to its pharmacokinetics. When compared to dexamethasone, triamcinolone, a particulate steroid has a slower onset time but may provide anti-inflammatory effects up to several weeks. Investigators want to investigate to see if there exists a difference in reported pain intensity using the particulate anti-inflammatory corticosteroid (triamcinolone with bupivacaine) which may provide a greater reduction in reported pain intensity relief may allow the patient to undergo fewer interventional procedures.

Detailed Study Description

Greater occipital nerve (GON) injection is a commonly performed diagnostic and therapeutic procedure in headache patients. GON blocks have been shown to be effective in the treatment of a variety of headaches including occipital neuralgia, migraine, vascular headache, cluster headache, cervicogenic headache, and post-concussive headache.The GON provides sensory innervation to the posterior scalp to the vertex of the skull and is known to communicate with the third occipital nerve and lesser occipital nerve during its ascent at the occiput.The use of ultrasound guidance to assist with needle placement is becoming increasingly popular due to real-time visualization of soft tissue and surrounding vasculature as well as the appearance of bony structures. This imaging tool allows for fine adjustment of the needle tip and direct observation of the injectate thereby confirming local anesthetic spread at the targeted area. Local anesthetic and steroids have been successfully used for diagnostic and or therapeutic nerve pain such as lumbar radicultis with great success. Dexamethasone is a water soluble steroid, when combined with local anesthetic; it may increase the analgesia of block duration relative to its pharmacokinetics. When compared to dexamethasone, triamcinolone, a particulate steroid has a slower onset time but may provide anti-inflammatory effects up to several weeks. Investigators want to investigate to see if there exists a difference in reported pain intensity using the particulate anti-inflammatory corticosteroid (triamcinolone with bupivacaine) which may provide a greater reduction in reported pain intensity relief may allow the patient to undergo fewer interventional procedures.

Clinical Study Identifier: NCT02655523

Find a site near you

Start Over