Epidural means “around the spinal cord”. This procedure is performed by directly injecting steroids into the epidural space of the spine. It is a common method of treating inflammation associated with low back pain related leg pain or neck related arm pain.
How is it performed?
The process includes the following steps:
- The skin is cleaned and anesthesia is injected to numb it.
- The doctor then inserts a needle towards the spine
- A fluoroscopic x-ray machine will be used to make a live x-ray video known as fluoroscopy. By this, the doctor will move the needle between the bones of the spine.
- With the help of a contrast dye, the doctor will confirm that whether the needle is placed in the epidural space or not.
- Doctor will insert a solution in the epidural space, once the needle is in position. This solution contains steroid medicines that would surely comfort the patients.
Are you a candidate?
Epidural Steroid injections are most suitable for people who are going through disk herniation, sciatica, nerve root compression and inflammation in the spine.
How long does the procedure take?
The procedure is carried out between 15 and 30 minutes.
After the injection, the patient is monitored for 20 to 60 minutes, before being discharged. It is advised by doctors to take the day off on which the epidural steroid is injected. The activities that were at a halt previously can be resumed on the next day.
- Temporary or prolonged pain relief
- Temporary or prolonged reduction of inflammation in the spinal region
- Better ability and energy to involve in the daily activities without the restrictions that were previously causing pain
- It may help in identifying the exact region of pain origination. This is usually a problem in patients having more than one possible cause of pain.