Published on January 31, 2020

Chronic Pain

Chronic pain is defined as pain that lasts for three to six months or more. It can negatively affect your daily life and mental health. Common causes of chronic pain include back or neck conditions, and certain types of cancer. Fortunately, the interventional radiologists at Silver Cross offer minimally invasive treatments that can relieve chronic pain.


  • Celiac Plexus Blocks. The celiac plexus is a bundle of nerves that surrounds the aorta, the main artery into your abdomen. Blocking these nerves from carrying pain information can help you stop feeling pain in your abdomen. Celiac plexus blocks at Silver Cross are injections of pain medication that help relieve abdominal pain, commonly due to cancer or chronic pancreatitis.
  • Facet Neurolysis. Millions of people suffer from back and/or neck pain. While most people get better, a significant number progress to chronic pain. The most common cause is pain related to the joints that connect and stabilize the spine. They are called the facet joints. At Silver Cross, interventional radiologists offer a minimally invasive procedure called facet neurolysis, which uses radiofrequency energy to temporarily interrupt or destroy nerves that carry pain signals arising from the facet joint. The procedure is performed under local anesthetic with X-ray guidance.
  • Bone Tumor Ablation. Bone tumors eat away at the bone, creating holes that make the bone thin and weak, eventually causing fractures that affect a patient’s quality of life. While most treatments for bone tumors aren’t curative, they can help reduce pain, prevent bone destruction and improve function. To treat bone tumors, interventional radiologists use thermal ablation techniques that destroy the target tissue with heat, while sparing the healthy tissue.  The interventional radiologist uses imaging to guide a small needle into the tumor. From the tip of the needle, microwave or radiofrequency energy is transmitted into the target tissue, where it produces heat and kills the tumor. The treatment can markedly improve pain related to the bone tumor.

Physicians on Silver Cross Hospital’s Medical Staff have expertise in their areas of practice to meet the needs of patients seeking their care. These physicians are independent practitioners on the Medical Staff and are not the agents or employees of Silver Cross Hospital. They treat patients based upon their independent medical judgment and they bill patients separately for their services.