A ganglion is a bundle of interconnected nerves that are important for pain in a certain area of the body. One such ganglion is the Gasserian ganglion or trigeminal ganglion – this ganglion is important in the treatment of some types of facial pain. The pain comes from one or more branches of the trigeminal nerve-the major carrier of sensory information from the face to the brain. It is possible to relieve pain by blocking the Gasserian ganglion. Since the thick nerves of the ganglion are not blocked, the remaining function of the ganglion remains intact. This Gasserian ganglion block is also known as the Sweet procedure.
How does the Sweet procedure work?
- The right place of the block is estimated with aid of fluoroscopy.
- The pain specialist under fluoroscopy places the needle in the correct position near the Gasserian ganglion.
- Then small electrical currents are administrated near the Gasserian ganglion.
- The pain specialist will give a radiofrequency (RF) electrical current or a pulsed radiofrequency (PRF) electrical currents via the needle to block the Gasserian ganglion.
- After the treatment you have to stay at the day care centre for two hours.