Do you need a lumbar epidural steroid injection? Sciatica and lower back pain are very common, and many people experience these pains in their old-age or due to injuries. The pain in the lumbar region of the spine can be very unbearable at times and leaves you in discomfort.
It is important to find the root cause and get this pain treated. For this, you must consult your pain management doctor right away. The best non-surgical way to treat this pain is the use of a lumbar epidural injection. A lumbar epidural is an injection administered in the lower back region for instant pain relief.
A pain management specialist injects an anesthetic or steroid into a targeted spot in the lumbar region – located just above the tailbone and below your ribs. The lumbar epidural procedure is quite effective for many people. This injection may not be effective for some, as it differs from person to person. If you want to know more about the lumbar epidural injection, continue to read this article.
Reasons to Need a Lumbar Epidural Injection
A few conditions indicate the necessity of a Lumbar Epidural Injection. If you experience any of the following, you may need lumbar epidural shots:
Lumbar Spinal Stenosis
Lumbar spinal stenosis is a spinal cord issue that is quite painful. It develops when the narrowing of your spinal cord chokes off the spinal cord and the nerves in it, which in turn causes excessive pain.
Lumbar Disc Herniation
A lumbar disc herniation is another back pain condition caused when the nucleus of the disc pushes inside the annulus, which is the outer ring and goes through the spinal canal. It puts excessive pressure on the nerves and spinal cord.
An annular tear is a very painful back pain condition that occurs when there is a tear in the disc’s outer layer.
The degenerative disc is a disease that occurs when the disc space collapses and impinges the lower back nerves.
Cysts are very common and appear in many areas of the body. But it’s pretty painful when it appears in the never roots or the facet joints as they tend to expand and squeeze the spinal structure.
Lumbar Epidural Injection Process
A lumbar Epidural process isn’t that difficult, and to some extent, it is quite successful. But the results vary from person to person; some people find instant relief while others may sense more pain than before. The whole process takes around 15-30 minutes.
Your doctor will perform the injection in the clinic, but you have to discuss the details with him/her beforehand. When you go for the procedure, your doctor will ask you to lie flat on an X-ray table on your abdomen. You can also lie sideways or whatever way you may feel comfortable.
Next, the healthcare professional will clean the area where they need to inject the solution and numb it with local anesthesia. After this step, the doctor will start to position the injection properly using a live X-ray screen, also known as a fluoroscopy, and slowly direct the needle towards the epidural space. This may take some time, depending on the skills of your doctor, as they have to make sure it gets inserted into the right area.
Once the needle is in place, the doctor will inject the lumbar epidural solution inside the injection and insert it in the right area. At this moment, you may feel a lot of pressure and needle poking as the solution amounts up to 10mL.
Once you receive the injection, you will have to stay for 15 to 20 minutes if you experience any severe pain or side effects. During this time your doctor will monitor you. If the injection causes no side-effects, the procedure is successful. Hence, you will get discharged after an hour or so the same day.
Common Risks of a Lumbar Epidural Steroid Injection
There are a few risks associated when getting a lumbar epidural injection. Your doctor will discuss the potential risks and side-effects with you before starting the procedure. Mentioned below are the common risks:
You may experience heavy bleeding; however, it is not very common and happens in rare cases. This is more common among those who already suffer from underlying bleeding disorders.
When receiving an injection, your body is more prone to go through a slight trauma from the needle inserted. This is more likely to cause nerve damage, which becomes very painful; however, this is also rare. Make sure to discuss the underlying health issues you are already facing before you get an epidural injection.
Other Common Risks and Side-Effects:
- Facial Flushing
- High Blood Sugar
- High Fever
- Low Immunity Levels
- Hips Arthritis
- May have an increase in back pain
However, all these side-effects last for a few hours only. So, you don’t have to worry, especially if you have chosen the best pain management doctor in town.
Takeaway: Consult A Pain Management Doctor
If you need the right consultation and solution for your back pain, you must immediately get in touch with Dr. Matthew Grimm, M.D., for effective pain management treatment. You must not take your back pain lightly and get the best treatment. Call us at 646-862-5555 to book an appointment with our pain management doctor.