If you have severe, ongoing lower back pain that doesn’t stop from sciatica, a herniated disc, or other back condition, you may be a candidate for an epidural steroid injection. You’ve heard of or may have experienced an epidural block given to reduce pain during childbirth. An epidural steroid injection is similar to but not the same as an epidural block for pregnancy.
The caring staff at Apollo Pain Management in Sun City Center, Florida, reviews your medical history and performs tests to determine if you can benefit from an epidural steroid injection (ESI). It’s a common treatment for lower back and leg pain. If you’ve tried medication, physical therapy and other noninvasive treatments that haven’t helped reduce your pain, an ESI is a logical step before considering surgery.
What happens during an epidural steroid injection?
You won’t be able to eat or drink for at least six hours before the injection. This procedure is usually scheduled for the morning. You change into a hospital gown. You’ll be awake during the procedure, but if you need it, you may elect to have medication to help you relax.
Your caring board-certified physician and pain management expert with Apollo Pain Management injects a steroid along with an anesthetic into the epidural area around your spinal cord and nerves. You may receive up to four injections in the target area. Your doctor places the injections with the aid of X-ray technology. The procedure takes anywhere from 10 to 30 minutes.
Goals of an epidural steroid injection
An ESI can help you in several ways.
The most pressing issue for you is pain relief. You’ve been in intense pain for some time. It’s disabling. You can’t enjoy life when you’re in pain.
The steroid blunts the reaction of the nerve fibers, lessening the frequency and intensity of the pain signals. It also reduces inflammation caused by chemical reactions in your body.
Reduces or eliminates need for medication
All medications have side effects. You’re not able to take NSAIDS or other pain medications for an indeterminate amount of time; they can damage organs in your body and create addiction.
After an ESI, your mobility should increase. You’ll be able to start or continue with physical therapy if it was interrupted because of your discomfort. You’ll be relieved to be able to accomplish normal daily activities again.
Postpones or eliminates need for surgery
Surgery always involves risks and a recovery period. You don’t want to undergo surgery if you can help it. By having an ESI, you may be able to postpone it. If physical therapy helps you enough so that you regain normal function, you may not need surgery.
Call Apollo Pain Management for an appointment, message us or ask your referring physician to arrange for one. We’re here to help relieve your pain.