Sphenopalatine ganglion block (1426)

Key points below

What is a sphenopalatine ganglion (SPG) block?

The SPG block is a medicine that can help treat headache pain.

How does the SPG block work?

The SPG is a group of nerve cells behind the nose. Some of them carry feelings (like pain) to the brain.  The SPG is linked to the main nerve involved in headaches. 

During an SPG block, numbing medicine is put onto the SPG using a cotton swab.  This medicine works to block or partially block the SPG.  

What happens during the procedure?

How will it feel?

It feels like a nose swab used for other tests, like COVID or other test.  You may feel some burning.

What are the potential side effects?

Side effects are rare.  They can happen during or after the procedure.  Many of them are short-term.  They may include:

How long will the block last?

This is different for every child. Some children will get relief for a few hours, while others may see relief for days, weeks or even months.


Talk to your child’s doctor or nurse if you have any concerns or if your child: 

  • Is not getting enough pain relief. 
  • Has any side effects from the medicine. 
  • Has special health care needs not covered by this information.