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An epidural steroid injection is a non-surgical treatment option for relieving back or extremity pain. Your doctor may suggest an epidural steroid injection to treat pain associated with a herniated disc, spinal stenosis, arthritis, or other degenerative conditions of the spine.

How does an Epidural Steroid Injection work?

Epidural steroid injections treat back pain by delivering a combination of anti-inflammatory and pain medications into the area of the affected nerves. An epidural steroid injection may also be used as a diagnostic test to locate the specific nerve root causing the patient’s symptoms. An epidural steroid injection is not a cure for underlying spinal conditions; it is often employed to reduce discomfort, potentially for months, in non-surgical candidates or serve as a bridge to definitive surgery.

Epidural Steroid Injection procedure

For an epidural steroid injection, you will lie face down and the injection site will be cleaned. Your doctor will inject a local anesthetic to numb the area. Occasionally, moderate sedation will be provided. A thin needle is then inserted into the epidural space, guided by fluoroscopic X-ray to ensure precise placement. A contrast dye is injected through the needle to confirm appropriate positioning prior to injection of the anesthetic and corticosteroid medications.

What can you expect after Epidural Spinal Injection?

You may feel some pressure during the injection, but the procedure is generally well-tolerated. After the injection, some patients may feel numbness in the distribution of the nerves treated. This is due to the anesthetic and usually fades within a few hours. Epidural steroid injections can take 24-72 hours before pain-relieving action occurs. In some cases, if the desired effect is not obtained after the first injection, then reinjection may be recommended.

What are the associated risks and complications?

With any procedure, risks such as bleeding or infection at the injection site can occur. Your doctor and nurses will discuss any other potential risks or complications before your procedure.

Doctors performing Epidural steroid injections

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