If you suffer from pain that radiates into the buttock and/or suffer from a disk herniation, failed back surgery syndrome, or severe spinal stenosis, this injection will help to minimize your pain.
Although an epidural injection may not relieve ALL of your pain, it will certainly reduce your pain. Some individuals feel more relief than others after the initial injection – some individuals require a series of injections. This may mean that you may have a total of 3 injections every two weeks with increased pain relief.
A vast majority of back pain is caused by inflammation. The steroid that is injected will help to control local inflammation and allow for a positive outcome of pain relief.
The location of this injection is above the small opening at the base of the sacrum. This area is called the sacral hiatus. Just beyond the sacral hiatus is the epidural space where the irritated nerve roots are located. A contrast agent, which allows the physician to verify needle placement, is injected into the epidural space. The anti-inflammatory is then injected and will bathe the nerve roots. This will help to reduce and/or alleviate your pain.
Risks and Complications
Spinal headache – this is very rare. However, this would be the type of headache that increases when in the upright position and decreases when lying down. You may be extremely sensitive to light. If this occurs, please let us know as soon as possible.
Bleeding – this is very rare. This is the reason you must remain off aspirin based products for at least 3-5 days prior to the injection. Also, if you are on any blood thinners you should be off of those as well for 5 days.
Infection – this is very rare. Keep an eye on the injection site over the few days following the injection. If any redness, bleeding or seeping of fluids is noticed, please call the office and speak with a staff member immediately.
If you experience a fever, chills or extremity weakness, please call the office immediately.
You should notice pain relief over the following 3-7 days. We ask that you decrease your activity by 30% the day of your injection. You can then increase your activity level as tolerated. Our goal is for you to maintain a healthy and active lifestyle – however too much too fast may result in increased back pain or minimal pain relief.