Managing pain is an unfortunate problem for many patients. Often pain can be controlled with over the counter medications, or in more severe instances, prescription pain relievers. In some cases, interventional radiologists at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital can play a role in alleviating patient suffering.

Abdominal pain in some patients can be due to irritation of the celiac plexus, a nerve cluster located deep in the abdomen. This problem is especially apparent with pancreatic cancer or chronic pancreatitis, although it also occurs with other diseases. This type of pain can be effectively treated with a celiac plexus block. This procedure involves direct injection of the celiac plexus with a drug that destroys it.

Back pain due to vertebral fractures or cancer involving the spine can be treated with kyphoplasty in some instances. This treatment involves using a balloon to restore the vertebral body height in conjunction with injection of a special cement to maintain the strength of the damaged area.

Back, leg, shoulder, or arm pain can be due to irritation of nerve roots as they exit the spinal cord. When a nerve root is compressed or inflamed, it can cause pain to the affected area. These nerve roots can be injected with medications in order to diagnose the problem and also to provide pain relief.

For further information or to schedule a consultation with an interventional radiologist, please contact the interventional radiology department at 202-444-5478.

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For further information or to schedule a consultation with an interventional oncologist, please contact the interventional radiology department at

202-444-5478