When inflamed spinal nerves cause back, neck, arm, or leg pain, an epidural injection may be the treatment you need to relieve the pain and return to your daily activities. Ravi Panjabi, MD, at Advanced Pain Management uses epidural injections to precisely target the source of your pain, whether it began as an injury or degenerative spine condition. To learn if you’re a good candidate for epidural injections, call one of the offices in Castro Valley, Fremont, and San Ramon, California, or schedule an appointment online today.
An epidural injection is a treatment to ease pain by reducing nerve inflammation. Your provider injects steroids and a local anesthetic into the epidural space of your spine, a fat-filled area that surrounds and protects the spinal cord.
When the medications enter the epidural space, they flow around the targeted nerves. The local anesthetic quickly relieves pain but doesn’t last long. Steroids take up to a week to work. Once the inflammation goes down, your results may last several months or longer.
Each person metabolizes steroids differently, so there’s no way to predict the extent of your pain relief or how long your results will last. If you have a positive response, you can get additional injections over time to maintain your results.
Epidural injections alleviate neck, back, leg, and arm pain that’s caused by inflamed spinal nerves. In most cases, the inflammation occurs when the nerve is compressed. Pinched nerves are notorious for causing pain, tingling, or numbness that radiates into your arm or leg.
Compressed spinal nerves often develop due to:
Though not as common, an injury may lead to pinched spinal nerves.
During the procedure, your provider uses fluoroscopy, a specialized type of X-ray imaging that shows the spine and needle in real time. With fluoroscopic guidance, they can place the injection at the site of the inflamed nerves.
After numbing the injection site, your provider inserts a thin needle and injects a contrast dye. Watching how the dye spreads into the epidural space confirms that the medication will travel to the targeted nerves. Then they inject the medication and remove the needle.
You can walk around right after your injection is finished. The staff at the clinic monitor you for a short time before you go home and then most people return to their usual activities the next day.
Patients rarely experience facial flushing, a low-grade temperature, trouble sleeping, changes in their menstrual cycle, or water retention. If they occur, these side effects are usually mild and improve in a few days.
To learn if an epidural injection can help alleviate your pain, call Advanced Pain Management or book an appointment online today.