Pudendal Neuralgia, also known as Pudendal Neuropathy, Pudendal Nerve Entrapment, Cyclist’s Syndrome, Pudendal Canal Syndrome or Alcock’s Syndrome, is a painful condition that can affect both men and women. It presents as pain in the genitals, urethra, anus and perineum when sitting, which is usually alleviated by standing up or lying down. Those affected describe the quality of the pain as everything from stabbing or stinging to aching, burning and pins and needles. This condition can also cause bladder and rectal problems/dysfunction, as well as sexual dysfunction and chronic constipation.
Pudendal neuralgia is caused by entrapment of the pudendal nerve in the pelvis, which extends from the sacral plexus through the pudendal canal, the perineum and the gluteal area. Pudendal nerve entrapment, usually caused by prolonged sitting (hence, Cyclist’s Syndrome) or trauma to seat area, can be diagnosed if the pain goes away after a pudendal nerve block, which involves injecting anesthetic to numb the nerve. The injection of anesthetic is administered around the pudendal nerve under fluoroscopic guidance for treatment. Pudendal nerve blocks are available in PainCare’s Merrimack office under the care of Dr. David Tung.