Regional anesthesia blocks pain to a large section of your body but does not make you unconscious. An anesthesiologist injects medication near a cluster of nerves that numbs only the region of your body that requires surgery. You will be awake, but you will not feel pain in the blocked region. You may also receive additional medication to help you relax or sleep during the procedure.
Types of regional anesthesia include:
Peripheral nerve blocks — This is a shot of anesthetic that blocks pain around a specific nerve or group of nerves. Blocks are often used for procedures on the hands, arms, feet, legs or face.
Epidural and spinal anesthesia — Anesthetic is injected near the spinal cord and the nerves that connect to it. This blocks pain from an entire region of the body, such as the belly, hips or legs.