Lidocaine is a common drug with many uses.  It can be used as a dental anesthetic, as an anti-inflammatory medication and to eliminate cardiac arrythmia.  It is utilized for nerve block injections and can be injected or used topically.

Lidocaine applied to the Sphenopalatine Ganglion can be used to treat, prevent and eliminate both migraine and Cluster Headaches.  It can be used in over 30% of patients to eliminate Essential Hypertension.

The Sphenopalatine Ganglion is a part of the brain that is easily accessible for topical application of lidocaine through the nose or injection of lidocaine by injections.

Sphenopalatine Ganglion Blocks are the fastest and safest method known to treat and prevent migraines and cluster headaches.  The safety record of lidocaine and Sphenopalatine Ganglion blocks is amazing.

The Sphenopalatine Ganglion Block was originally discovered by Greenfield Sluder  in 1903.  He wrote many articles and two books on the subject.  The first book was in 1918 “Concerning Some Headaches and Eye Disorders of Nasal Origin” and the second book in 1927.”Nasal Neurology”.  Greenfield Sluder was the Chairman of the Department of Otolaryngology at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis.

A 1930 article on “Sphenopalatine Phenomena”  by Hiram Byrd was published in the “Annals of Internal Medicine, the Journal of the American Medical Association.  It detailed the amazing success of Sphenopalatine Ganglion Blocks. The article detailed the results of 10,000 blocks in over 2000 patients with an almost impeccable safety record.

“Forgotten Medicine” is the term used to describe amazing treatments that are often forgotten or discarded by medicine in spite of great efficacy.  The Sphenopalatine Ganglion Block was largely replaced by an avalanche of medications when migraines were being treated.  Each new medication touted as being better than the last in spite of many having questionable safety records and not achieving ideal  results.

This was largely the case of the Sphenopalatine Ganglion Block also known as Pterygopalatine Ganglion, Nasal Ganglion, Sluder’s Ganglion and Meckel’s Ganglion.

This video is of a physician who specifically went into medicine because of his personal experience with the incredible relief a Sphenopalatine Ganglion Block can give.  He was never taught in medical school what it was and retired from medicine to become an artist when he could not access the power of the block to help his patients.

The Sphenopalatine Ganglion Block was still practised by a few physicians from an earlier era who saw alternatives to medical prescriptions for treating problems.  Dr Milton Reder a New York City Otolaryngologist was one such physician.  Albert Gerber wrote a book “Miracles on Park Avenue” about this remarkable doctor who may have saved this miraculous procedure from the dustbin of medicine.

This same treatment that can prevent, treat and eliminate migraine is also used for tension headaches, TMJ disorders, all types of ear, sinus and eye pain, anxiety, depression and PTSD.  This is why it is often referred to as the “Miracle Block”

I originally learned the procedure in 1986 after a patient gave me a copy of the book “Miracles on Park Avenue” shortly after it was published.  No one in the Chicago area knew what this block was but Jack Haden a Kansas City Dentist and TMJ Specialist was an expert and I flew to Kansas City and learned the procedure and have been doing the blocks ever since.

I am the leading proponent of teaching patients how to “self-administer SPG Blocks” and have taught courses to hundreds of neuromuscular dentists in Scottsdale, Seattle and Buenos Aires as well as in my office.

Thousands of patients from around the world came to see Dr Reder and today I have patients from across the US who come to my Highland Park office to learn the technique.  Visit my website

Comparisons of Botox and SPG Blocks definitely favor the use of a simple lidocaine block over injections of a neurotoxin but both of these treatmnts show good success rates and they can be used together for even more improvement.  I would always suggest starting with an SPG Block.  I have personally taken training for Botox but prefer not to use it myself because it is a dangerous neurotoxin;    Some of the risks of Botox according to Mayo clinic include:

  • Pain, swelling or bruising at the injection site
  • Headache or flu-like symptoms
  • Droopy eyelid or cockeyed eyebrows
  • Crooked smile or drooling
  • Eye dryness or excessive tearing

Although very unlikely, it’s possible for the effect of botulinum toxin to spread to other parts of the body and cause botulism-like signs and symptoms.

These effects can occur hours to weeks after receiving Botox:

  • Muscle weakness all over the body
  • Vision problems
  • Trouble speaking or swallowing
  • Trouble breathing
  • Loss of bladder control
  • Death

Doctors generally recommend against using Botox when you’re pregnant or breast-feeding.  Botox must be used only under a doctor’s care. It’s important that injections be placed precisely in order to avoid side effects. Botox therapy can be dangerous if it’s administered incorrectly.  If you take blood thinners, you may need to forgo them for several days before your injection, to reduce your risk of bleeding or bruising.

It is interesting to note that there is a study looking at the efficacy of utilizing Botox on the Sphenopalatine Ganglion to treat migraines as well that was published in Cephalgia. The “Pilot study of sphenopalatine injection of onabotulinumtoxiA for the trestment of intractable chronic cluster headache” can be found here:

Intractable and refractory headaches can also be treated with sphenopalatine ganglion blocks.

Copyright 2014 • Dr. Ira Shapira •

For effective TMJ and Sleep Disorder solutions. 3500 Western Ave Suite 101 | Highland Park, IL 60035 | Phone: (847) 533 8313.

Dr Shapira is a licensed general dentist in Illinois

Serving the communities of Chicago, Deerfield, Evanston, Highland Park, Kenilworth, Lake Bluff, Lake Forest, Libertyville, Lincolnshire, Mettawa, Morthon Grove, Northbrook, Northfield, Skokie, Vernon Hills, Wilmette, Winnetka, Lake County

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