If you’re suffering from neck or back pain that doesn’t seem to be getting better with conservative treatment, then it may be time to consider epidural steroid injections. The experienced pain management team at Michigan Neurology Associates & PC, with offices serving the Metro Detroit area in Clinton Township, St. Clair Shores, Utica, and Westland, Michigan, provide expertise in this and many other interventional pain relieving treatments in a safe, efficient, ambulatory surgery setting. Schedule a consultation online or by phone today to see if you would benefit from an epidural steroid injection.
An epidural steroid injection is a minimally invasive x-ray guided needle based procedure that delivers pain-relieving medicine to the epidural space in your spine. This is the space that separates the bony spinal canal from your sensitive nerve roots. This area is commonly inflamed in Degenerative Disc Disease. The injection contains a steroid and a local anesthetic and is used to relieve pain in your neck, that may also radiate into your arms, or in your low back, that may also radiate into your buttock and legs.
Your pain management specialist at Michigan Neurology Associates & PC determines if you’re a good candidate for an epidural steroid injection during your consultation.
The pain-relieving injection is most often recommended to relieve pain caused by:
The team usually doesn’t recommend an epidural steroid injection until you’ve tried more conservative treatments to relieve your pain, including anti-inflammatory medication and physical therapy.
Your epidural steroid injection is an outpatient procedure that shouldn’t take more than 30 minutes to perform. You can be awake during the injection, but your specialist may provide an oral injectable sedative or monitored IV sedation if needed. Depending on the source of your pain, the injection can be directed to your neck, lower back, or tailbone (sacrum).
During the injection, your specialist has you lie or sit on an X-ray table. Then, with guidance from an X-ray fluoroscopy, the needle is placed through a patch of anesthetized skin, then through to the epidural space of your spine. Your physician will then guide the injection of the medication near to the nerve root. You may feel some pressure or pulling during the injection, but not pain.
After the injection, you spend a little time in the recovery room for monitoring, but you should be able to walk on your own. However, due to the possibility of leg weakness following an epidural steroid injection, the team at Michigan Neurology Associates & PC recommends you have someone drive you home after the procedure. You may need to take it easy the day of the procedure, but you should be able to resume your usual activities by the following day.
Pain relief following an epidural steroid injection varies from person to person, but you should feel at least some relief. Good relief is indicative of an accurate identification of the “generator” of your pain. You may need an additional injection (Need insurance rules here). A follow up appointment is essential to document the quality of your response and to plan or justify the next steps in your plan of care. The duration of pain relief also varies, ranging from a few weeks, months or to a few years.
Chronic pain can affect every aspect of your life, but there are many pain-relieving options available in addition to epidural steroid injections. Schedule a consultation online or by phone today with the pain management team at Michigan Neurology Associates & PC.