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Trigger Point Pain

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:

A trigger point is a tight, tender lump in your muscle. Trigger points may form after muscle injury, overuse, stress, or tension. Muscle stress may be from poor posture or an awkward sleep position. Emotional stress can make you tense certain muscles, such as in your neck.

DISCHARGE INSTRUCTIONS:

Call your doctor or pain specialist if:

  • You have new or worsening pain around the trigger point.
  • You have questions or concerns about your condition or care.

Medicines:

You may need any of the following:

  • NSAIDs , such as ibuprofen, help decrease swelling, pain, and fever. NSAIDs can cause stomach bleeding or kidney problems in certain people. If you take blood thinner medicine, always ask your healthcare provider if NSAIDs are safe for you. Always read the medicine label and follow directions.
  • Prescription pain medicine may be given. Ask your healthcare provider how to take this medicine safely. Some prescription pain medicines contain acetaminophen. Do not take other medicines that contain acetaminophen without talking to your healthcare provider. Too much acetaminophen may cause liver damage. Prescription pain medicine may cause constipation. Ask your healthcare provider how to prevent or treat constipation.
  • Medicine may be given to help your muscles relax.
  • Take your medicine as directed. Contact your healthcare provider if you think your medicine is not helping or if you have side effects. Tell him or her if you are allergic to any medicine. Keep a list of the medicines, vitamins, and herbs you take. Include the amounts, and when and why you take them. Bring the list or the pill bottles to follow-up visits. Carry your medicine list with you in case of an emergency.

Manage trigger point pain:

  • Do regular stretches of the trigger point muscle. Place gentle pressure on the trigger point, and then stretch the muscle. Ask your healthcare provider for more information about how to stretch and apply pressure.
  • Apply heat to trigger point sites. Heat can help relax muscles and relieve trigger point pain. Use a heat pack or a heating pad set on low. Apply heat for 15 minutes every hour, or as directed.

Follow up with your doctor or pain specialist as directed:

Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.

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The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.