Find information on how we’re keeping you safe from COVID-19 here

To top

CT Guided Injection

What is a CT guided injection and what is it used for?

A CT guided (facet joint/nerve root) injection is an injection of local anaesthetic and steroid under CT guidance, into the area where the nerve leaves the spine.

Use of the CT scan for the injection is to guide the radiologist precisely to the area that needs to be treated to ensure accuracy. The procedure involves an injection either directly into the joint or to the small nerve near the joint. The injection consists of a mixture of local anaesthetic (to numb the area) and a corticosteroid (reduces inflammation at the site). Together this reduces pain and other symptoms caused by the inflammation.

What are the benefits of having a CT guided injection?

These injections help reduce the pain associated with the compression or aggravation of nerves commonly in your neck, back or legs.

Sometimes the injection is actioned to decide whether or not surgery might be helpful and at what level it should be performed.

Are there any risks with this procedure?

This is a very common and safe procedure however with most procedures, there are risks, side effects and a possibility of complications.

There is a small risk of bleeding (1 in 100), infection (1 in 10,000), nerve injury, or allergic reaction to the medications used. The injection may fail to relieve the symptoms and you make experience worsening of symptoms (about 1 in 10 patients). This is temporary and may last for 48 hours after the injection. You may feel some numbness or altered sensation that follows the path of the nerve that was injected and sometimes there can be some temporary weakness caused by the local anaesthetic (between 1 in 10 and 1 in 100 patients). This will be discussed with you by your referring consultant before booking and by the radiologist conducting the procedure on the day.

If you are or think you could be pregnant, or if you have had allergic reactions to corticosteroids or local anaesthetic, you must tell your referring doctor and imaging team.

How long will the procedure take?

The procedure takes approximately 30 minutes however this can vary depending on how many injection sites you require. We will ask you to stay in the department for a short while after your injection to ensure you feel comfortable enough to go home.

Can I book myself in for a CT guided injection or do I need a referral?

A referral is required for this procedure which is usually either a consultant specialising in pain management or neurology. You can speak to your general practitioner for further advice on which specialist consultant to see, so they can assess if this is the best option for you. Self-referral is not currently available.

Contact Us

To speak with a specialist about a CT guided injection, contact our team today.
We are available from Monday to Friday: 8am – 8pm.