injection

Epidural Steroid Injection

Overview

Epidural injection is the administration of medication into the epidural space. It is used to treat swelling, pain, and inflammation associated with neurological conditions that affect nerve roots, such as a herniated disk and radiculopathy.

Epidural injections may be painful and produce uncertain results. Studies show that epidural injection may provide short-term pain relief for patients when conservative treatments have failed.

Anatomy

The brain is covered by three membranes (dura, arachnoid, and pia), called the meninges that extend through the base of the skull and surround the entire spinal cord. The spinal cord travels down the entire length of the spinal column through the spinal canal. The epidural space is located between the dura and the interior surface of the spinal canal and contains veins, arteries, and fat. Epidural injection is the injection of medication into the epidural space.

Procedure

Epidural injection is usually given in an outpatient setting. An anesthesiologist usually administers the injection, but some neurosurgeons, orthopedic surgeons, and neurologists are also qualified to perform this procedure.

A mild sedative and a local anesthetic may be given prior to the procedure to relax the patient and numb the injection site. Medications, usually an anesthetic such as bupivacaine (Marcaine?) or a muscle relaxant, and a corticosteroid such as methylprednisolone (Medrol?), are injected directly into the epidural space. (The injection is commonly called a cortisone shot.)

Effectiveness

Approximately 30% to 70% of people who receive an epidural injection benefit from it. Some patients notice improvement within hours of the injection; others improve over a number of days; and others experience no improvement with the treatment. In some cases, two or three injections are given over weeks or months.

Complications

Complications resulting from an epidural injection are rare. Possible conditions that may develop following the procedure include infection (e.g., epidural abscess), bleeding into the epidural space, and headache caused by a cerebrospinal fluid leak. Approximately 2% of patients experience side effects from the corticosteroid, such as mild fluid retention.

Lumbar Epidural Steroid Injection:

Your physician may refer you for a procedure called an Lumbar Epidural Steroid Injection. This procedure is used to treat swollen and inflamed spinal nerve roots often referred to as a “pinched nerve.” The spinal nerves come from the spinal cord and exit the backbone to provide sensation to different parts of the body. Occasionally something rubs or irritates these nerves where they exit the backbone causing them to be swollen and inflamed. The source of irritation may be a ruptured, herniated, or bulging disc. Another source may be Spinal Stenosis, where arthritis of the spine, bone growth, or hardening of the ligaments begins to close the openings in the spine through which these nerves exit. Common problems associated with this inflammation of the spinal nerves include:

  1. Pain in the lower back
  2. Pain down one or both legs
  3. Numbness or tingling of your legs or feet
  4. Weakness in one or both legs or feet

Your symptoms may include some or all of the above problems. Your physician may treat these symptoms with oral medications and/or physical therapy or exercise. Another method for treating this condition is called an EPIDURAL STEROID INJECTION. This technique involves an injection of a steroid into an area of your lower back called the epidural space. The epidural space extends through the spinal canal from your head to your tailbone. The spinal nerves pass through the epidural space and are therefore bathed in this steroid (a solution of anti-inflammatory medicine). After the procedure you will be asked to reduce your activities at home for 24 to 48 hours to allow the medicine a chance to do its work. Within a few days after the injection, the medicine should reduce the swelling and inflammation of these nerves and thereby reduce your symptoms.

You will probably be asked to return two weeks after your first injection. If all of your pain or numbness has been relieved, you will not need another shot at that time. Most often, however, the first injection will relieve most, but not all of your pain or numbness. At that time (2 weeks after the first injection) we will suggest a second EPIDURAL STEROID INJECTION. Occasionally you may require a third injection two weeks after the second one. After a series of three injections, you should probably wait six months before starting another series of injections.

EPIDURAL STEROID INJECTIONS work very well for most people with the above problems. While it will not cure everyone, this procedure can be extremely helpful to relieve the pains caused by “pinched nerves”.
If you have questions about this procedure, please discuss them with your anesthesiologist.

Here are some commonly asked questions and answers:

  1. Will this injection cure my problem?

    Although this procedure may give excellent pain relief, it will not fix the source of the “pinched nerve”. However, by reducing the inflammation of the nerve and with the help of some exercises provided by your orthopedist or physical therapist, you should have months to years of freedom from pain. And although you may have to return for a repeat series of Epidural Steroid Injections in future years, many people prefer this treatment than having surgery to repair the defect.

  2. Are you going to give me a shot in my back!?!

    Yes. This is the best and easiest approach to the Epidural Space. We do not inject anything directly into the spinal nerves or spinal cord. As stated above, by using the Epidural Space the medicine can soak into the nerves very easily without a direct injection into the nerve itself.

  3. I only have pain in my leg. Why are you giving me a shot in the back?

    As stated, the nerves which supply feeling to your legs come from the spinal cord in your lower back. The site of irritation of this nerve is usually in the lower back where the nerve leaves the spinal canal or backbone. Your Doctor referred you for this treatment because he feels this may be the source of your problem.

  4. Is this procedure safe? What are the risks?

    As with any procedure, there are always certain risks involved with injections. Epidural Steroids have proven to work very well and carry very low risks of injury. However, anytime you receive a shot there is a minimal risk of complications. It is rare that these complications ever cause a significant problem. The following are some, but not all of the possible complications:

    1. Bleeding or Infection at the site of the injection: Minimal bleeding is not uncommon, but it is extremely rare that this is a significant problem
    2. Pain during or after injection: This is not a common problem, but may occur when there is significant swelling and irritation of the nerve root prior to the injection. This is usually self limiting (it doesn’t last long) and does not usually occur with the second or third injection.
    3. Post-spinal Headache: Occasionally the needle enters the dura (the membrane that covers the spinal fluid and nerves). This is called a “wet tap”. This does not occur very often, but when it does, the patient gets a particular type of headache. As stated, this is an uncommon occurrence and there is a treatment for this type of headache when it occurs.
    4. Reaction to medications or nerve injury: Reactions to the medications can occur but are quite unusual. Injuries to nerves or nerve roots are possible, but extremely rare.


  5. Will these steroids cause my muscles to increase like the athletes that take illegal steroids?

    No. These steroids are anti-inflammatory agents, not the anabolic steroids like athletes use.

Cervical Epidural Steroid Injections:

Your physician may refer you for a procedure called a Cervical Epidural Steroid Injection. This procedure is used to treat swollen and inflamed spinal nerve roots often referred to as a “pinched nerve.” The spinal nerves come from the spinal cord and exit the backbone to provide sensation to different parts of the body. Occasionally something rubs or irritates these nerves where they exit the backbone causing them to be swollen and inflamed. The source of irritation may be a ruptured, herniated, or bulging disc. Another source may be Spinal Stenosis, where arthritis of the spine, bone growth, or hardening of the ligaments begins to close the openings in the spine through which these nerves exit. Common problems associated with this inflammation of the spinal nerves in the neck or cervical spine include:

  1. Pain in the neck or shoulders
  2. Pain down one or both arms
  3. Numbness or tingling of your shoulders, arms, or hands
  4. Weakness in one or both shoulders, arms, or hands

Your symptoms may include some or all of the above problems. Your physician may treat these symptoms with oral medications and/or physical therapy or exercise. Another method for treating this condition is called an EPIDURAL STEROID INJECTION. This technique involves an injection of a steroid into an area in the back of your neck called the epidural space. The epidural space extends through the spinal canal from your head to your tailbone. The spinal nerves pass through the epidural space and are therefore bathed in this steroid (a solution of anti-inflammatory medicine). After the procedure you will be asked to reduce your activities at home for 24 to 48 hours to allow the medicine a chance to do its work. Within a few days after the injection, the medicine should reduce the swelling and inflammation of these nerves and thereby reduce your symptoms.

You will probably be asked to return two weeks after your first injection. If all of your pain or numbness has been relieved, you will not need another shot at that time. Most often, however, the first injection will relieve most, but not all of your pain or numbness. At that time (2 weeks after the first injection) your anesthesiologist may suggest a second EPIDURAL STEROID INJECTION. Occasionally you may require a third injection two weeks after the second one. After a series of three injections, you should probably wait six months before starting another series of injections.

EPIDURAL STEROID INJECTIONS work very well for most people with the above problems. While it will not cure everyone, this procedure can be extremely helpful to relieve the pains caused by “pinched nerves”.
If you have questions about this procedure, please discuss them with your anesthesiologist.

Here are some commonly asked questions and answers:

  1. Will this injection cure my problem?

    Although this procedure may give excellent pain relief, it will not fix the source of the “pinched nerve”. However, by reducing the inflammation of the nerve and with the help of some exercises provided by your orthopedist or physical therapist, you should have months to years of freedom from pain. And although you may have to return for a repeat series of Epidural Steroid Injections in future years, many people prefer this treatment than having surgery to repair the defect.

  2. Are you going to give me a shot in the back of my neck?

    Yes. As noted above, in this instance the nerves involved are located in the cervical spine. This is the best and easiest approach to the Cervical Epidural Space. We do not inject anything directly into the spinal nerves or spinal cord. By using the Epidural Space, the medicine can soak into the nerves very easily without a direct injection into the nerve itself.

  3. I only have pain in my arm. Why are you giving me a shot in the neck?

    As stated, the nerves which supply feeling to your arms and hands come from the spinal cord in your neck (the cervical spine). The site of irritation of this nerve is usually in the cervical spine where the nerve leaves the spinal canal or backbone. Your Doctor referred you to us because he feels this may be the source of your problem.

  4. Is this procedure safe? What are the risks?

    As with any procedure, there are always certain risks involved with injections. Epidural Steroids have proven to work very well and carry very low risks of injury. However, anytime you receive a shot there is a minimal risk of complications. It is rare that these complications ever cause a significant problem. The following are some, but not all of the possible complications:

    1. Bleeding or Infection at the site of the injection: Minimal bleeding is not uncommon, but it is extremely rare that this is a significant problem
    2. Pain during or after injection: This is not a common problem, but may occur when there is significant swelling and irritation of the nerve root prior to the injection. This is usually self-limiting (it doesn’t last long) and does not usually occur with the second or third injection.
    3. Post-spinal Headache: Occasionally, the needle enters the dura (the membrane that covers the spinal fluid and nerves). This is called a “wet tap”. This does not occur very often, but when it does, the patient gets a particular type of headache. As stated, this is an uncommon occurrence and there is a treatment for this type of headache when it occurs.
    4. Reaction to medications or nerve injury: Reactions to the medications can occur but are quite unusual. Injuries to nerves or nerve roots are possible, but extremely rare.
  5. Will these steroids cause my muscles to increase like the athletes that take illegal steroids?

    No. These steroids are anti-inflammatory agents, not the anabolic steroids like athletes use.


Recent post

Ever Have A Bad Epidural?
Submitted by gregg on 15 May 2010 – 10:41pm

222 thoughts on “Epidural Steroid Injection”

  1. I had the epidural steroid injection done 2 days ago. For me it worked amazingly well. I have almost no pain in my lower back, and my right leg is completely back to normal. I am scheduled to return for the 2nd injection in a week, and look forward to the additional relief that may bring!

    1. saw your post during 2010 and you were talking about how good you felt. did it last. are you still taking the shots? i am considering it and would really appreciate any update on how you are doing now.
      thanks.

      1. I have my first shot with a pain blocker on September 7th and am having another one on October 5th. I have had a wonderful response considering I was all but unable to walk and the pain was a constant 7 to off the charts…..waited 2.5 months before seeing the docs and getting things rolling. Since my first injection things have slowly started going south again….nothing like it was but still I can tell it is getting there…..I have taken it really easy since the first injection but intend to be much more active after the next one. I can not wait to see what it does and I will post back to this site/comment after having the next procedure.

        1. Well the shots only last a couple of weeks before the pain from walking begins to become an issue. I am going to call the doc as we agreed on a schedule of PRN….while things are dynamically improved I am still looking to become more active! Will let you folks know how my road is traveled……

          1. Well, I had my third last week. It LOOKED promising until I did a little housework the other day. My leg muscles were so sore — I guess because of atrophy that the back pain started ALL OVER again. I’m discouraged, but i will not have a fusion surgery, which is the suggested alternative. :-(

            I wish all of you more success than I am having.

        2. I am scheduled to see the Doc in a different location on Monday, Dec. 10th as his local clinic could not see me until Jan. and I would be in a NEW DEDUCTIBLE year (5K deductible to get to 80/20)! Now I will be having a “New Patient Consultation” and later I pray another shot. My plan is to try and hold with this shot until May when my Medicare starts. I then will go the orthopedic group that has my history and see what might be my options. All I know is that this is no way to live…..in pain.

  2. going in for my second injection tomorrow. The first shot didn’t hurt, but it did cause me to be in extreme pain for about 48hrs. I have had the worst headache of my life for the past 13 months…I had a MRI and was then told that C2-C4 were inverted causing spinal deformity. I know I am not a doctor, but with all the research I have done i truly believe this deformity is doing something to my nerves that are causing this unbearable headache. I am 27 yrs. old and scared to death i will always be in pain. I’m having the injections because the doctors dont know what else to do. I have been to a neurologist, neuro surgeon, chiropractor (biggest mistake ever… I know have terrible neck and shoulder problems on the left side), and now i am with the anestesiologist. Has anyone had a headache that was caused by spinal deformity?

    1. YES,lately I’ve been having these trouble headaches, neck pains, numbness in my fingers. It seems my pian have worsing since I had the epidural injection. I’m very depressed because I don’t know what’s happening to my body.

      1. I have had my first injection about a week ago. It has made my pain worse plus a list of side-effects has come with it. I went to the dr. today to get my second one and he told me basically i am lying. They don’t cause worse pain for more then a few hours. He said he will give me one that is not as strong this time and if it causes continued pain to call him and he will call my referring dr. and tell him the pain i am having makes no sense to him and will not treat me again. I am getting depressed by all of this. I have been in pain for 6 months, now i have side effects from the injection and the the dr. is telling me i’m faking it. If these dr.’s don’t want to help people with feelings why don’t they just work with dead people and leave the the rest to a dr. who really cares.

        Thanks for listening. Any feed back would be helpful.

        1. I have had the worst experience with my back injury. I completely understand your frustration. My doctor wouldn’t listen to me about how much pain I was in and the insurance company refused to do an MRI until I went to physical therapy for at least 3 weeks. I originally had severe pain in my back but after going to the therapist once and doing the exercises he recommended, the pain left my back and went into my leg. The pain was so severe that I basically begged and cried in the doctor’s office to get me and MRI and wrote a scathing hate letter to the insurance company. FINALLY got an MRI and was able to be referred to a surgeon. The surgeon couldn’t see me for a month!!!! My life was basically over since I couldn’t walk or barely move and was getting hooked on narcotic pain meds with each day that I took them. A friend got me in to see the surgeon early by pulling strings and he referred me to the pain mgt specialist who last week gave me an epidural shot. A week has passed and am still in significant pain but no where near as bad as it was. I’m battling depression now since my life sucks, been out of work for a month and can’t even drive. Plus the steroids are giving me night sweats and nausea.

          I can’t believe that in this day and age, it is so difficult to receive treatment for back injuries.

        2. I have been suffering from a back injury since age 19 1/2, where I fell from a helicopter in the US Army. After over 15 years of ESI’s, physicl therapy and doctors telling me its in my head was depressing. It took a caring doctor to do a discogram and see that I had a ruptured disc and do a procedure called Percutaneous Laser Disc Decompression (PLDD). Best darn thing I have had done. No major recovery time and went back to work in weeks. I just had another ESI for a different disc level and I am feeling better from another disc that is a problem child. Oh yeah…and this was all done at the San Diego VA Hospital by a UCSD Doctor.

          1. I to am , a Vietnam vet having back trouble, ruptured disc L4 L5 S1, pain in right leg bad. please e mail me. NAM 67-68 7TH CAV 1ST CAV DIV.

        3. i just had one in my neck today and that was this early afternoon i am in worse pain now praying i wake up feeling better ugggg. didnt expect to be in worse pain. i can turn my head from side to side but cant move it forward never had this pain before injection. sucks now.

        4. With my first epidural, I cried the whole time. From the time I had to lay flat on my stomach to the time the needle went in. It took two days to get over the bad pain, 2 weeks before returning to somewhat normal function. That doctor did not do another steroid injection, instead I had rhizotomy done first on one side of the lower lumbar then a week later on the other side. I have changed back doctors and this back doctor gave me a sedative which helped greatly. I had my first two shots yesterday and will have the next in two weeks with the SEDATION.
          Hope that helps.

        5. wow. you have a dilemma. I also have the same problem. the doctors i been to are insensitive and smug as they know they are the only one that doesnt have a month long wait list and because we a desperately needing relief from our pain they do what they want. this doctor here told me i have an Si joint problem and ordered 10 xrays of my spine although i told him i have 20 years of my back going out every 2 years but only stiffness for a week. he even did the physical test and i past those all regarding the si joint but still ran me around and gave me shot in my si joint even when the xrays should it to be normal. i decided to go to another and he knew it was lumbard disc herniation and had me do a mri and found 3 herniated disc.

          1. Had my first series of injections (cervical) about 2 months ago, and they worked instantly…for about 2.5 weeks, and the STEROID MANIA lasted 2 weeks, so my “feeling great” time was only 4 days. STEROID MANIA is the side effect no one warns you about…imagine staying up for 20 hours at a time, for 2 weeks straight, panic attacks, anxiety and depression. One entire day I just sat and cried. ( You should know that I take sleep med, and 2 antidepressants, as well as Lyrica for my Fibromyalgia). I couldn’t put sentences together and my short term memory was shot and my attention span was that of a gnat. IT WAS SO AWFUL I put off my second round of injections till today ( 2 months later). Today has been a terrible day~ lots of swelling and pain that radiates up and down my spine. Feels like my back is in a vise grip that squeezed tighter when I move. Dr had promised some anxiety meds for the mania this time, but when I brought it up in pre-op, he wouldn’t commit. I am very concerned that I have made a mistake going throught this again, but i will reserve judgment for a couple of days of healing. I have people praying for me and I know it can really turn things around!

        6. hi dear i have had 8 weeks of the most unbearable pain from a bulging disc and a disc crushed onto my sciatica nerve. finally had the injection. omg i was in so much pain on the day and then had 2 suffer the injection as well it was hell on earth , straight after the injection my pain was 3 times WORSE, and 2 days later still is. god help me get threw the next day or so till it kicks in

        7. WHO WAS YOUR DOCTOR ? I am so sorry Cheryl. My name is Candy and I have Bad neck pain from a car accident. I’m going in for a cervical epidural and I am so afraid. I pray that you will be pain free.

      2. Cheryl,
        I had my second cervical epidural a week and a half ago. I woke up in agony my right breast , shoulder arm and hand and it has not gotten better. It hurts to have water over my hand. It feels broken and numb. i went to see my doctor yesterday and he too said there is no way these symptoms have anything to do with the procedure. What I said… “I woke up to this pain” he then proceeded to tell me woman who have had trauma ( he must of read my personal file) make up pain. Wow just like you and this morning I have a blinding headache from my neck the one thing I had the shot to eliminate. And I’m making it up he says how can you make up such things and do specifically. Thank you at least I know I’m not alone. Good luck!

    2. Yes, I have episodes of head pain. This happened after my 2nd cervical fusionm. I started to notice after physical therapy sessions while I was driving home I would get pain in my eye. I have also been asleep but woke up with eye pain more in the right than left. Went to eye specialist and they are convinced it is coming from my neck. I was diagnosed with occipital neuralgia. Suffered for years. Of recent, changed neurologist and new one put me on verapamil ER 180 mg. and it has helped with the eye pain but I still get the headaches but not as bad. . .hope I am not talking too soon. My spine is all messed up from multiple things. Email if you can. Feel better.

    3. megan have you ever had your shoulders mri? i use to get headaches,was told for 2 years it was tendinitis,i had savere musle spasms long story short i got the mri needed surgury on both shoulders, 1 was a bone spure and the other shoulder was a torn legiment and bone spure,my muscles were so tight i got terrible headaches,god bless,

    4. I got the injection, for two week I had the worst headache, PT called my doctor he said to wait another week to see what happens. I got worst I had to have a blood patch – the fluid from the injection was leaking out into my brain and making me have the headaches. on top of that the injection didn’t help me and the blood patch has decreased the headaches but not taking it away completely.

  3. I had an Epidural Steroid Injection today on my lower back (L4/L5 region). I feel So Much better already! I may get a full night sleep tonight! I have been suffering from terrible Sciatica from my left Hip to Lower Leg for just about 7 weeks. I tried everything, and nothing seemed to help. The injection was not painfull at all, and in a few weeks, if needed, I will be happy to get another one.

  4. I had this injection 3 weeks ago and it has not helped at all, in fact it has made things slightly worse. I am suffering from facet joint arthritis, due to thinning discs in my lower spine. I was told the disc thinning was normal for someone my age (35). The pain is unbearable at times and I am unsure what to do next. Any info would be appreciated.

  5. This seems to be the only thing my, not board certified, DO, not even an MD wants to do. Frankly, NO, I will not do it. One wrong move…paralysis. Another thing, I had an spinal when I had my daughter 20 years ago, to this day I still have numbness in my right arm. It will be a cold day in hell before ANY doctor shoots ANYTHING into my spine.

    BTW, my cousin is a board certified neurosurgeon and he said “Don’t do it”.

    1. I’m sorry but your completely wrong. Lower back injections are no wear near the spinal cord so there is not a 1 percent chance of paralysis.

  6. Just got the shot it did not hurt at all. I have a bulging disk in my neck with the pain shooting down my right arm. Its been a tough month especially out of work. Hopw this will help

    1. Greg
      Please could you let me know how successful it was and how your neck is now? I have just been diagnosed with a cervical prolapsed disc and my consultant has recommended I speak to the anaesthetist in the few next days to see if I want to go ahead with an epidural on Wednesday. I would appreciate your views/feedback if possible. Thank you.

  7. I just got a cervical epidural yesterday morning for pain in my neck, shoulder, arm and hand (with tingles in my fingers). I opted for the awake rather than the sedated injection. I was rather strange to feel (the pressure) and hear the injection. There was some pain but it only lasted a few moments. I could feel pain down my arm when the doctor got the needle to the nerve root for C6 on my left side (didn’t last long).

    From start to finish was only fifteen minutes or so and I walked out within thirty minutes from check in to check out.

    I had a very weird phantom pain in my arm for about half and hour then a couple of hours where my arm didn’t really feel like my own (not much coordination). I felt a little sleepy the rest of the day and my neck hurt some after the pain killer (injected, Novocaine?) wore off. One day later my constant companions; tension in neck, headache, neck pain, arm pain and hand pain are all but gone. I still have some tingling in my fingers.

    I felt pretty good this morning so did some heavy lifting (next day after injection) and that was a bad idea. I’m a little dizzy, achy and tired. I think I’ll be taking it easy the rest of today. I’m getting a little cortisone face flush too.

    1. Your condition sounds a lot like mine even the feeling better and lifting part. I have not had the the shot yet. I’m reading how people reacted to the shot. I’ve been told that I should go ahead and have surgery. But I would like to try the shot first. What do you think Thanks

    2. Hello Gainer,
      I have just been recommended a cervical epidural by my consultant today. My symptoms are similar to yours – pins and needles in left fingers and hand and pain in arm (especially upper arm). How are things of you now?
      I look forward to hearing hopefully.
      Best wishes.
      Joanne Smart

    3. Hi Gainer, how is it going now, I am supposed to go in tomorrow for the same thing, C7 nerve block, same symptoms, left shoulder, forearm and wrist aches, not too bad that’s why I’m nervous about the injection, don’t want things to get worse.

  8. had my injection 9 days ago lot of pain dow bothy legs and across hip for the first 5 days and he worst migrain i have ever had for the first 2 two days how ever now feeling a lot better and for the first time in 3 years pain free. however can anyone tell if it is normal for my legs to itich so much i have no rash or hives

  9. I had a epidural done last friday in my neck. Was having pain, numbness and tingling on my left side. The shot was not too bad, but I left the office still in pain. My pain has not gotten any better and I am having these spasms in my mid back, that I wasn’t having before. Now today, My left arm is very heavy and lifting my fingers takes work. Everything just feels so much heavier than before. Can anyone relate to this????? And if so, your input will be greatly appreciated.

    1. Hello Trisha,
      I hope you are OK now? I am considering the cervical epidural but am anxious to hear how others have got on. Any comments you could make would be appreciated.
      Thank you.
      Joanne Smart

      1. Hi Joanne,
        Did u get the cervical epidural? I had mine this past Thursday, so 4 days ago. I am still taking my Norco for pain. Having pain and weakness in my right arm that I didn’t have prior to the shot.
        Headaches at the base of my head where my neck starts. I have 2 bulging discs. How r u feeling?
        Liz

  10. I had the epidural injection done in my lumber region today and have never felt pain like it. I was told to fast from midnight which I did. I was told I would be having a sedative. I did not really want this as I had looked up on the internet tand it said it was not really neccessary. When I went to the hospital the doctor that was doing it said he did not use a sedative so I was pleased and very calm when I went in to the theatre. However when he came to the bit where he puts the fluid in the canal spaces I felt total agony going down my legs. I have never felt anything like it in my life and it seemed to last forever. I just hope that it has all been worth it Cat

    1. Did the pain that you felt when he gave you the injection ever go away , I had the same thing happen to me . I am still in pain.

      1. Sorry to say Cyndi I had two in 1993, the first put me in the hospital for 4 days with such pain morphine would not take it away, in my back, right leg. They forced me to take another after I got out of the hospital. The second one did not hurt but it did not releive the pain that the first one put me in. I blacked out for a minute and would have fallen off the table but the man that was doing it grabed me by the coller and kept me from hitting the floor. He did not use “Floroscopy” as they state it should be done to keep from hitting nerves. I have lived in the pain for 19 years now, it never goes away.Lost my job anyway because they forced me back to work and I had a seziure on the job because of the pain. I dont know how these jackasses get by with holding your job over your head and just torcher the crap out of you. After that the birddog that was sent to my appointments decided they were going to do 4 nerve blocks. They straped me to a table on my side where I could not move and ran 8″ long needles from my side all the way to my back, without even a local. They could here me screaming all the way out in the lobby. To hell with waterboarding, jus send them to these Sadistic asses, and they will tell them anything they want to know.

  11. I had my first shot back in July, 2010. My hip and lower back pain got better, but the numbness in my left foot is still there. I just had the second shot 2 weeks ago, after this shot the numbness seem to have increased. Also, I’m having tingling the leg and headaches every day. I’m wondering if the headaches are side affects from the shot, I’ve been having the headaches since the first shot, I had a CT scan done a couple of weeks ago, it checked out ok.
    I’ll just give it time to see if I get better. What I need to know, have some one else been experiencing headaches.

  12. I read some horror stories before my 2 shots this morning and was very nervous. It was all unnecessary because the shots were only ‘uncomfortable’ for less than a minute. Not at all as described by the fear mongers on the Internet.

    My advice though and MUST DO’s:

    1) make sure it is fluoroscopy guided (live x-ray) or there’s a high chance the doctor will miss the correct injection site. That aside, I think there’s a higher chance you’ll be visiting a bad doctor who doesn’t use x-ray technology though!

    2) Make sue your doctor is qualified to give the injection and was trained by a fellowship. My doctor said that many doctors who give these injections only went to a seminar on the subject! That is outrageous for sure an important and critical injection.

    I had two injections today and I can already feel a big improvement.

    Good luck with yours!

    1. Alex,glad to see your recovery report on Oct.21,2010.
      How are you this year2012.
      Im c5-c6 bulging disc/spur-pinc-nurve.
      thanks for your info.

      1. I have had two injections out of the recommended series of three. Severe disc herniation in L4-5. After the first, my pain level went from a 8-9 range down to a 2-3 range.I had the second injection yesterday. Hoping that the residual pain will be gone in a few days. I’m laughing at all of these posts describing “excrutiating Pain”. The initial local anthestic injection was nothing more than a pinch. The epidural injection presented a pressure feeling in the back which lasted approximately 30 seconds. I had mine done by an anthesiologist using a fluoroscope. It helped me tremendously. Don’t listen to all this BS about excrutiating pain. Good luck. Hope you all of the sucess that I had with this.

        1. Sad that you are “laughing” at these post describing excrutiating pain. It sounds like your procedure went well and perhaps you don’t have the issues these other people have. I had this injection. Initially, it helped, for a couple of weeks, but now I have agonizing pain in my arm and shoulder –pain I’ve not had prior. This disc issue is from an accident in March 2009 and four years later, following my first epidural treatment, I am in worse pain. I cannot lay down. The pain in my nerves and muscles is intense and I have tried with a variety of pillows to get comfortable to sleep. I have to prop myself in a sitting position, and when I slide/shift in my sleep, I don’t know what to do.

          1. I have the same thing I woke from anesthesia with it excruciating pain starting in my breast across to my shoulder blade down my arm, into my hand that feels broken now (horrid pain washing hand) and my doctor said he’s never heard of such reactions I’m making it Up ~ wow help! Anyone! I’m in terrible pain now on top of the neck pain I had. It made it worse.

        2. The injection didn’t hurt my 1st one lasted 1 1/2 weeks then the pain came back worse. The 2nd injection didn’t hurt but it did after the fact and it’s been almost a month and i’ve been in the worst pain of my life. I could not lift my arm without severe pain could not get out of bed my back where the injection went had severe pain and spasms. My thumb is now numb and severe arm pain which I didn’t have arm pain before just neck and should pain. The Dr. did something very wrong. I went to ER they didn’t do much but give me more pain pills I called the Drs office several times talked to his nurse they gave me all these pain meds. that only made me sick. I go back today I’m suppose to get my 3rd injection but will NEVER get another injection again I want to see what the Dr. recommends, I don’t trust him though. I’ve had several which helped some this one the Dr. did something very wrong. I’ve never been in more pain in my entire life. I have 2 bulding cervical disc. and I wish I never had this done. it’s destroying my life and all I can hope for is the pain goes away soon. I think he caused some nerve damage I will see what he says today but I feel like I now need to see a neurologist.

          1. My advice to you is FIND ANOTHER DOCTOR. This one cannot be trusted. Not all orthopedic surgeons are good at their job. I’ve had one wonderful one – the injection was painless and all pain was gone for 2 years. I’ve also had one bad one – the injection hurt terribly and I still have pain and he billed me for 3 injections when I only had 1 (I have not paid). The first one has moved out of my small town – the second one runs the only clinic in town, and it’s his way or the highway, so now I will take the highway for 2 hours to another city to find a better doctor.

      2. Hello Will,
        I would be most grateful if you could advise if you had a response from Alex on this and indeed how your got on. I am showing the same signs as you (nerve affecting left fingers/hand/arm) and my consultant has suggested a cervical epidural next week.
        Any comments would be appreciated.
        Thank you.

        1. My first two were somewhat painful. The last one had me shrieking and cursing like someone possessed. I was given a “light anaesthetic. This was code for “we are going to play help us find the correct node.” After about ten minutes of a poke here, a lightening bolt there, they finally found it. Feeling that pain run the length of that nerve will injecting was unlike anything I’ve ever felt before. I have a fairly good threshold for pain, but this was ridiculous.

          The next day, things improved…I was hopeful. Now, not even two weeks later, it seems to have worn off. I’m really depressed.

          1. I understand. Talk to the doctor if you feel depressed – it may be exacerbated by the steroid itself. This procedure is not for everyone. I think it is really hit and miss (no pun intended) with the pain thing. I have had two done, both with x-ray, by a very qualified neurologist who does probably hundreds of them, and is scheduled out for months. The first time it was a tiny pinch, followed by a light, kind of weird “ache” and I walked out feeling better than when I went in. No problem at all. I couldn’t sleep the first night because of the steroids, and my back was a little achy, but that was a small price to pay. I had slight numbness in my leg almost exactly in the places that I have sciatica, which wore off in a few hours.

            The second one, on the other side, traumatized me for life. For anyone who hasn’t had this done before, please don’t read the following paragraphs if you have already decided you must have this procedure because it will only scare you. Just prepare yourself, and remember that you may face some torturous discomfort, but there is a chance of it paying off in the long run. If you have a strong mindset, and you are determined to do whatever you can for a chance at freedom from pain, then you will be OK. A good relationship with your doctor can help as well. If in doubt, get the sedation if you can. I was caught completely off guard and I did not do well mentally or physically.

            It probably doesn’t happen like this often, but for my second injection, this was my experience:

            The tears started streaming down my face as soon as he got the needle in. It just kept going deeper and deeper; it seemed like forever. I don’t cry easily. I have a physical job, I like extreme sports, I’ve been in a fighting ring, motorcycle accident, and I’ve survived cancer. I’ve broken half my ribs, and literally laughed at the pain. I may be a 100 lb female, but I know how to take pain. During this procedure, I tried to grit my teeth and keep quiet, but I couldn’t help but cry out in pain. None of the staff offered any comfort or reassurance. It was the most messed up feeling imaginable. I cannot begin to explain it, but it felt really…wrong. Like a metal thing stabbing and scraping around into your spine, I suppose. When I was sitting in the recovery area with my little cup of water, the doctor came over to ask how I was feeling and I couldn’t even look him in the eyes. I felt terribly wronged. I just started shaking uncontrollably. I tried to speak, and a few sounds came out, but I could not complete a single word. My vision started to close in and I thought I would pass out. He left and a different nurse came and sat next to me for like 10 minutes and held my hand while she monitored my vitals and let me just sit there and sob. The doctor felt bad and he came back to say he was sorry. I feel a little bad for him now, but his compassion came too little too late. I vomited as soon as I got to the parking lot from the pain and trauma. If they tell me I need another one of these, I won’t be able to stomach it, even though the first one really did help. In fact even the second one helped my pain for a few months, but I will never put myself through this again. My insurance doesn’t cover sedation. The trauma may have only lasted a few moments, but even the briefest trauma can affect the brain for a long time. It just depends on the person and the state of mind. Just as a note – nothing went wrong with this procedure. No bleeding, infection or spinal headache to suggest that he did it anything but correctly. It’s just how my nerves happened to react on that side, and how my psyche, for whatever reason, failed to withstand the experience.

            From a sincere place of compassion, all I can say is that I hope it goes better for everyone else.

            Good luck.

      3. Hello Mark and Alex,
        I am really glad that both of you had success with your injections. However, no one should say anything negative about those who have not had a successful injection/s. I had two sets of injections, the first one was on April 28, 2011, afterwards I was in extreme pain and more so than before the injections and none of my medications helped. So, I called my doc and he advised me to get another set of injections, in which I did. The second set was May 5, 2011 and it was by far worse than the first. On the third day following the second set of injections I awoke and went to get out of bed and almost fell flat on my face. Had it not been for my dresser I would have. My right leg was completely paralyzed, (Very Scary to Say the Least) and lasted for approximately four hours. My husband had to carry me because I was unable to walk during this nightmare!! We are now in September the 16 of 2012 and I am still dealing with this and with no promising future since these doctors have no clue as to what’s wrong with me. I am dealing with extreme pain and it continues to get worse and the doctors have no clue as what to do. I have been to PT, Aquatic PT, I have been on numerous medications, over 15 doctors and counting, MRI’s, EMG’s and numerous other test and still no relief. I am to the point where I can only stand for 5-10 minutes and I am in so much pain and pressure on my L-4, L-5 and S-1 that I have to sit down with ice on my back and medicine in my stomach to get relief from this mind controlling pain that I am in!!!! Without my ice, pillows, medications, husband and my 76 year old mother helping me I don’t know where I’d be??? I wish the best to all that are having problems with the same or similar issues as to me. I would really like to get everyone that has had an adverse reaction to these injections together. Because I believe with all the people out there suffering from these Epidural Steroid Injections, that something could be done in order to get these issues resolved. Instead of having to deal with all these life altering issues such as, suffering, pain, depression the loss of having an everyday life and the burden that it puts on you and your family!!!!
        I wish the very best health to all and their families!!

        1. your post (experience) is soooo similar to mine.. it’s uncanny… i’ve just had my 3rd injection sep.19.’12 .. so for the past three months i’ve dealt with going to the hospital and getting NO results.. with my first one… after i got over the week of hell pain of getting the shots.. around the 3rd week i was feeling ok.. but just for a few days… then hardcore pain comes again… oh.. for me L4, L5, degenerative disc disease, pain down my left leg, so doc says let’s do another one… so i did .. that was last month… and i had NO relief what so ever from that one… and a few days ago.. on the 19th.. i had my 3rd, this time he shot L5, S1…so as i’m typing this now.. i’m propped up on many pillows on my bed, which is where i reside most of the day.. and omg.. i’m still getting over the pain.. 1-10.. imma 9 right now.. my life seems to be passing me by.. i have also been experiencing .. which i have all along.. shocking, tingling down my fingers.. so.. i may have something going on in my C range.. anyway.. my doc is seeing me next week, for a back to the drawing board session… i’m thinking another MRI is coming… and i really hope i don’t have to have surgery! here’s the kicker… since my shots didn’t work last month… my meds went quicker, & i only have one pill left.. i wasn’t off by many,(i go to a pain clinic) but.. i now have to wait a few days before i can refill my prescription, at least he strengthened my meds.. from perc 5’s to 7.5.. and i also take neurontin .. and soma’s .. so i totally understand your suffering ..and depression.. i am right there with ya.. thank God for my supporting family.. i don’t know what i would do w/out them.. they are my rock! I hope you find some relief .. as well as i.. and thanx for posting your experience.. ! take care sweetie :) i hope to hear back from you..

        2. I am so glad I am reading the experiences that you are sharing. I had a MRI done two days ago and it read Reverasal of the normal cervical lordosis, mild central stenosis at C2-C3, C3-C4,C4-C5 and C5-C6, mild buldging at C3-C4,C4-C5 and C5-C6. I have constant pain in my neck, arm and numbness in hand and no matter what I do nothing helps. I have an appointment with my doctor tomorrow and was going to do the cortisone shots but after reading this page I changed my mind. I am already not for injecting anything in my body so thank you so much for sharing your stories. I am going to invest in a home neck traction device for my neck and keep going to my chiroprator. I hope all goes well with everyone. It’s a shame that you put your trust in your doctor and get treated that way. I was in a car accident 3 months ago and I also have to herniated disc in my lumbar 4-5. I will find another way to deal with the pain. God Bless You!!!

  13. I had an injection before an overseas trip and it lasted about 2-3 weeks and while I was still away, the pain came back a bit less than it originally was. I am now back and have an appoinment on Monday 10/25/2010.
    When I received the first injection on 9/28/2010 I was told to return in 2-3 weeks but could not do so because of my trip overseas. I have ine question since the first injection was to be at c4-c5 but the doctor did not have a clear view so did the CESI. Not sure if that was a less successful approach or not.

  14. I have been in pain for 20yrs. Its started with tingling and pins and needles in my hands and feet that turned into unbearable cramps in the instep of my feet and contraction like pain in my forearms. It was accompanied by tenderness off my muscles, joints and tendons. I also have a numbing feeling accompanied by pain in my head and the roof of my mouth which is actually causing my tounge to press against the roof of my mouth. I wanted to commit suicide. 6yrs later after seeing various doctors I was diagnosed with fybroemyalgia. My lower back pain has been my main complaint, because it causes my to be unable to sit or stand for too long. though the pain does move along other areas of my back. I have also got sleep related problems. I WONDER IF THEY HAVE DIAGNOSED ME CORRECTLY. I have been offered a slinal epidural injection and I’m not sure whether to have it because I’m afraid of the proceedure being painfull. and my nerves are so sensitive That I have pins and needles 24/7. All my MRI scans and x-rays have not showed anything abnormal. NO obvious cause! the radiography report just says some degeneration but no obvious nerve or disc damage and no abnormallity. IS it worth the risk of taking the injection or shall I look for other relief. bare in mind the lower back is in real agony now and there seems to be no let up… your advice and comments will be much apprecieated. tony.

    1. Tony,
      I think you have Peripheral Neuropathy and you need an EMG study and a good neurologist who deals with neuropathy. You can look up on their website http://www.neuropathy.org you will find out a lot of information on the disease. Good Luck! Nancy

  15. I had my first shot 2 days ago,I was a nervous wreck just thinking about getting a shot in my neck. Well I didn’t like it at all .I’m not good when it comes to needles. It was a little painful and the sound of the needle going in was sickening.I’m not looking forward to the next one if there is one. I hope other people have a better experience then I did,I still have pain and sore where the injection was.I guess it takes time.

  16. I had my epidural done on the 6th of October and my pain has not improved at all…..as a matter of fact it has gotten worse. My goal was to not have to take any narcotics drugs for pain. Well, I held on until two days ago. I had the epidural done and my neck, and now my pain is so bad that I cannot hold my head up and I’m having the worse back pain ever. This procedure may be good for some, but not for all. I know I will not be having the second treatment. Good luck to those of you that it has helped. I wish you much more success with it. And for those like me that it didn’t help, I guess we will all have to look for other options.

    1. I would like to ask u a question….I had a injection in my neck yesterday and the pain is worse but my neck is more swollen and red and sore…is that normal??? The pain is worse then it was and it hurts more when I’m trying to hold my head up among other things

  17. I had an epedural injection (L4/L5 pressing on nerve) yesterday. Felt fine until a few hours ago. Pain is back in hip, going down into calf of left leg. Don’t want to do this again. I agree with Cat Shannon … the pain was horrible when the meds were inserted. Worse than the five children I delivered naturally!!!!!

  18. To all that has had this done to them for one reason or another……If it helped you than by all means you should have another one done. If it did not help or made your pain just that much worse than getting another one done will be you hurting yourself. These doctors that perform these shots really do not care one way or the other. All that matters to them is that they get paid. Meanwhile, for the ones that it has not help we will have to (as I have been told), just learn to live with this for the rest of our lives…which sometimes I just cannot imagine living this way. Life should be lived and enjoyed…..but that has been taking away and replaced with HELL. Please, do your research before allowing anyone to stick a needle in your neck, or any part of your spinal. Those problems cannot be reversed.

    1. I had my first epidural back in December of 2011. It only helped about a week and the pain came back. Second epidural was in February of this year. Within 3 days I was in the worst pain I’d ever felt in my life. I returned to my neuro and was told they didn’t want to do any more injections and since I’m not a good candidate for back surgery they would refer me to pain management. The pain mgmt Dr happens to be same Dr who did my epidurals. FIRST VISIT as soon as I walked in he said they were doing another injection. RIGHT THEN!!! When I refused saying I thought it was supposed to be a consutation for pain mgmt he INSISTED that if I didn’t do it RIGHT THEN he’d make sure I “Never got treatment ANYWHERE ever again.” In the end he gave me a narcotics refill and told me I’d “better make up my mind what was best” for me and come back in one month for the injection. Since that time I’ve spoken to TWO other Dr’s and BOTH of them said that I DO NOT NEED the injections because the first two didn’t work, it’s a huge waste of time and money and it could potentially do A LOT more damage than good. Now I’m wondering what I should do as I’m running out of pain meds which really only offer slight relief anyway, if I want a refill I KNOW he’s going to FORCE me into another epidural…but without the meds I’ll be in such pain that I’ll stop sleeping again, even…I’m in the process of trying to find another pain mgmt clinic but good ones in my area (though there are many that aren’t that good) are few and way far between. Please, people, do your research and be careful what kind of Dr. you choose.

      1. @trisha – the issue is that these pain clinics are under tons of pressure from the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA). Something like 8/10 people surveyed believe that chronic pain sufferers are just a bunch of narcotics addicts. If you check the chronic pain boards, the doctors who post will say straight out that they are not willing to risk their licenses to write narcotic prescriptions for non-cancer chronic pain. My story is not unlike anyone else’s. I had a very serious car accident as a kid with near fatal injuries. Some 30 some odd years later and I have all kinds of issues with my spine. I have had a C5/C6 cervical fusion. Thank goodness I insisted on having them graft in my own bone taken from my hip. At the time they tried to convince me to accept donor bone and something in me said no. I would have gotten bone from that company that was indicted for raiding funeral homes for donor bone. Some people got HIV or HepC after receiving those bone grafts!! I did the epidural injection and the facet injections. I didn’t get any real relief. During the last epidural injection I went into respiratory arrest. I was told not to do any more injections bc they didn’t benefit me and I had such a serious reaction.
        I was stuck with the option of pain pills. (I tried PT, accupuncture, Reiki, everything before even considering a pain clinic). Pain pills are my last stop. My pills have worked GREAT for 7 years. Now suddenly they are under political pressure to stop prescribing pain pills. The result is – I have NO CHOICE. I either submit to the series of injections again or they discharge me. Worse? They are cutting all of the patient’s pain Rx’s in half. (Not just mine, in other words. We are all being put through this). Can you imagine my fear? They are taking away what works while forcing me to undergo a procedure that not only didn’t work the last time, but also put me in serious jeopardy. (We don’t know why I stopped breathing during the procedure). Bc it was a different clinic, they don’t believe me. I tried to get those records and for some reason the last clinic “cannot find them.” (This was 12 years ago). I suspect they think I will sue them. (Not even on my radar).

        1. Dear Amazon woman
          I was wondering. How you made out with your pain clinics? I have bulging discs in my neck they want to try a eidural syteroid injection boy sure about that well I hope your doing. A little better these days. Take care LL

    2. I had my second cervical epidural a week and a half ago. I woke up in agony my right breast , shoulder arm and hand and it has not gotten better. It hurts to have water over my hand. It feels broken and numb. i went to see my doctor yesterday and he too said there is no way these symptoms have anything to do with the procedure. What I said… “I woke up to this pain” he then proceeded to tell me woman who have had trauma ( he must of read my personal file) make up pain. Wow just like you and this morning I have a blinding headache from my neck the one thing I had the shot to eliminate. And I’m making it up he says how can you make up such things and do specifically. Thank you at least I know I’m not alone. Good luck!

  19. I had injections in L4/L5 a few weeks ago. The injections themselves weren’t bad. However, I’m 32 yrs old and I felt like I was 90 afterward. My legs and back were very numb and I could hardly walk for hours. The site of the injections became quite sore the next day but there was no pain in my legs or low back. On the 3rd daY my low back and hips became very stiff. My soreness has become worse then it was before the injection now. My nerves are very agitated and are twitching and the areas targeted by the injection are extremely inflamed.

  20. someone email me if you know the answer massssssone@aim.com…thanks.

    I am going for my 3rd L5 spinal epidural on december 8th. I had had my first one 18 months ago, then i had another 6-8 months later, they seem to run out for me in 6-8 months, my question is, how many of these can you get? I was told only 3? I get my 3rd one on dec 8th 2010, and the pain im in is unbareable. i’m worried that when my last injection pain blocker runs out, i wont have any more options?
    they wanted to give me back surgery, im a 27/m and i was scared to do it. the injections have helped tremendously for me.

  21. I had the procedure done on my C5 for unbearable pain in my left shoulder, that I was sure was a torn rotator cuff. I was so sure that before the injection I had made an appointment to see another Dr. for a second opinion. Then I received the shot, 15 minute procedure, painful but not excruciating and I am on the third day after and I feel fantastic! The pain in my shoulder is all but gone, very slight with rapid movements, and the numbness I was experiencing in my pinky and ringfinger has been replaced by a tingling and warmth that has been missing for months. This procedure has worked for me so far and I am hoping for long term relief. I have since cancelled my appointment for a second opinion.

  22. I will be getting my first of a series of three cervical epidural shots. I am very nervious, however I will be sedated. I began feeling shoulder pain about 4 months ago,which eventually moved to my shoulders, numbing and tingling in my arms and fingers, stiffness in my neck a headaches. The pain is with the 24 hours a day with no relief. Because I have MS it took some time and a lot of different doctor visits, muscle relaxers and pain medication before getting to this point. I pray that this series of shots will give me some relief I have found myself becoming depressed and longing for the day of normaliy back in my life. I pray that all of you including myself find comfort and some type of resolution to your problems. Lynn

  23. I have just completed my 5th ESI in 12 months for stenosis, sciatica and hip/groin pain from severe scoliosis. Each time my doctor focused on a different area in the lumbar region and each time I got relief in some, not all, areas. The last 2 we planned close together to hopefully increase the benefit. So far, so good. I get a combination of Fentenyl and Versid. The only side effects have been facial flushing and bad constipation. I’m told there is no limit to the # of treatments. Sounds like some folks are getting primarily cortisone which, I believe, there is a limit to. Good luck!

  24. I am having the cervical epidural injection this week and am scared to death but am so desperate for relief from pain in my neck,upper back, shoulders and arms 24/7 & can not keep taking vicoden forever. PLEASE tell me this works??? I really am losing hope. I had a bad spinal tap yrs ago and was leaking fluid which caused months of BAD headaches and needed a blood patch to fix it. SO I am a nervous wreck to have someone touch my spine again but don’t know what else to do anymore. Had PT and nothing else helps :(

    1. Hello Missy,
      I do hope your pain has been resolved. I have been recommended a cervical epidural for my neck, upper back, shoulder, arm and hand problems. Please could you advise if if worked for you? I do hope so.
      Many thanks.
      Joanne Smart

  25. I have a buldgin disc L4-L5 area. I was given my 5th shot within a 6 month period, only finding out by researching on the net that 3 should be the limit in a year. Getting the shot was easy. But, I had my period from Sept.14th thru Nov. 22nd non stop and then again from Dec. 1st up to Dec. 15th. I have have headaches daily, sleepless nights, flushed face/hot flashes. I have gained weight in my stomach, breasts and my face looks bloated. After the 4th shot, I had this terrible under the skin itching in the breast area and feel uncomfortable all the time. After the 5th shot I finally experienced a brief relief from the pain shooting down my right leg, only to have it come back and is just as bad as ever. They now have me taking vicadin for pain. It’s been over a year of this and I can’t take much more. I sit all day at my job and am sick to my stomach from pain by the end of my day. Surgery is the next option.

    1. I think the limit on shots depends on your doctor/hospital I was told six within a year. I’ve had three…..they don’t seem to be working so I might not have any more. I thought I was nuts…I too am having hot flashes. My brother HAD the fusion surgery. It failed and he ended up a Demerol addict. He finally overdosed at the ripe old age of forty five. I will NOT have the surgery. I was on Vicodin for six weeks and finally got off of it. Stay frosty…it has to get better from here, right?

  26. Today I had my first in a 3 series of the Epidural Steroid Injection. I am a sonographer who suffered labral and rotator cuff tears. After two shoulder surgeries and many months of PT I still have no relief only to discover I have a protrusion in my neck that could possibly be causing my symptoms. My symptoms include: Painful pressure under arm, both sides of elbow & wrist, sharp stabbing pains, muscle spasms & dull ache in shoulder, with numbness in tip of thumb. These symptoms come and go but mostly come making any daily task or night of sleep nearly impossible.
    At this time I have a stiff neck, slight pain and minor swelling. I do believe all of these were to be expected after this procedure. I am scheduled for my second injection in two weeks and I am praying this will bring relief!
    Does anyone happen to know if shoulder injuries in any way can directly affect the neck. Thanks for any feedback and God bless you all.

  27. I have had several successful epidural injections, cervical and lumbar (neck and low back) over the past 8+ years. My most recent was lower lumbar and I had wonderful and instantaneous relief. My back is shot, probably from 40 years of being a nurse, a skier, and generally enjoying life! My goal is to stay active and avoid surgery and as long as these epidurals work, I’ll keep coming back.

    The limit of 3 epidurals is only for those who don’t get relief. I got 5 years out of my first 3 cervical epidurals, and my Dr. didn’t hesitate to repeat them when the pain recurred. They work well, but not for everyone. The risks are small.

    I always take the power nap option – a little anesthesia to put you to sleep for a few minutes while they give you the injection. I’m a nurse, but a wimp! Good luck.

  28. I had a “Whiplash Injury” and went to chiropractor for 6 weeks and
    no relief except temporary. I had MRI done and it revealed Slight and Moderate
    Disc Protrusions to C-5, C-6, and C-7 Cervical/Neck. I was like you are kidding me.
    I have always has bad habit of popping neck anyway. Tried 3 weeks of Physical Therapy and traction, Naproxen 500 Mg. twice daily anti-inflammatory. Steroidal pack 10 days. Finally after consulting with the Best, (Spinal Surgeon Methodist Hospital Houston and a World Reknown NeuroSurgeon) I decided based on the Surgeons reccomendation to get the injection. Pain pinch/clamping when turning to right especially (Pain located in left side of neck). Anyway I had the Cervical Steroidal which I was totally freaked about. Knowing my luck man I was thinking I would end up worse! The procedure was very quick, I remembered nothing much. Anyway It gave about 75-80% improvement January 17th. I followed with Doc. and he suggested more phys. therapy. Of course we all want that QUICK FIX right??? I like many others got relief but for how long? Only time will tell. I am highly considering 2nd one but spinal Dr. stated to be judicious as there is a max of 3 per year I think. Not sure if the cotisone steroidal will fatten you up? Hope not. Have to watch my weight being in military. He did everything under fleuroscopy and took pictures of it as well which was cool. This ame guy believe it or not did a “BLOCK” on hip area 20 years ago! What is the chances of that man??!! 23 years of experience put me at ease. I am not sure if bulge discs/protrusions ever resolve themselves. Wuld suck to have to keep from getting more and more but I def. do not qualify for surgery. I also heard surgery can create scar tissue and more problems no matter how good the Doc./Surgeon. Body sometimes can heal itself. This crap is uncomfortable though and not sure if excercise can further aggravate it? sizes are 1.4 and 2.8 which seem fairly small giving me hope it would get good results. Been taking Valium to try to leave neck alone but do not wish to take that forever. WIfe was going to kick my ass as I started popping it again. Feels temporarily good but may keep other things stirred up I just don’t know man. I wont die but this stuff sucks man. Tried ice, heat and everything. Kind of scared if I press my luck could stir something up with additional injections. Do many need 2nd ones to hit the jackpot?? They should be at 2 week intervals but mine will be about 4 weeks later after another shot at physical therapy. Excercise is great man but I would dance naked with peanut butter if I could just get the damn pain to subside, more of a discomfort than anything. Shoot me an email if anyone has thoughts please. Maybe some additional traction will allow disc/protrusions to reduce. 1st one was certainly better. Email me with any suggestiions PLEASE: ernest1944@hotmail.com

    Mike

    THANKS!
    — Be careful with what you read on NET lot of bad info. out there that will freak you out. Having excelent qualified surgeon/Doc that can do this is the key. They went from center of my shoulder blades and the catheder went I guess further up and administered medicine left side epidural space.

  29. One other comment. The Doc. stated this is NOT Pain Management, he stated these should fix you where you can go about your normal routine/excercise etc.
    Thing is I have heard it is not a PERMANENT FIX. One lady told me she had one and never had a problem in her back in 13 years since then. Others have said they work temporarily or not at all. I pray on it. I do not like TEMP. man I would prefer PERMANENT! As we ALL WOULD! I am 42 years old, do not wish to be limited.
    Chiropractor may have fired things up. Should have got MRI before allowing them to touch me. Surgeon stated the spots may have been there before accident/injury and further aggravted. When you see MRI report it freaks you out man says pressing on thecal sac etc. I was like WHAT! But no tingling or loss or strength or numbness which is good!

  30. Hello! I had my first injection this past Wednesday. First i have to say it was the single most painful, traumatic experience of my life lol. Stupidly, i opted for the local anethesia instead of general. The doctor and nurses said that it was actually good i felt that pain because it meant that they scored a bullseye with the injection. Second, it has already worked wonders. Before i was practically a cripple in constant pain, now i have a slight limp and slight pain. NOT PERFECT mind you, but much, much better. I may get another one to issue the coup-de-grace on the disc ;-)

    Chris

  31. My mother is 79, with bad osteoporosis and is quite hunched over. While suffering from a cough and congestion this week it seems like she has developed a pinched nerve or maybe even a fracture by her coughing fits. She is in extreme pain. Right now she is having an Xray for them to understand what is happening. But doc this morning says she might need an epidural for this pinched nerve. But seems like this is not a great thing to do. Has anyone any experience with an epidural for a person who is this elderly and has such a curved spine? Are there other solutions for a pinched nerve that one should try first? Thanks for all input.

  32. The best thing you can do is take care of yourself nothing will ever be the same but you can deal with it and keep it from getting worse pills dont work for long and bring lots of problems with them liver damage for one and bad withdrawls that are worse then the pain.Injections help very little so not worth the tissue damage that they cause.Surgery try to avoid unless its the last straw it might help your problem now only to make a new one thats alot worse how do I know Had two Dr one said wait as long as u can eventhough you have a very damaged neck the other you need surgery right away wanted so bad for the pain to go away anyway had 3 fusions in my neck 2took after 3 years one did not I have cervical stenosis with myelopathy ,degenerative disc disease you name it ive gained 40 pounds hurt night and day what worked best was keep walking eat chocolate smile lose weight stay away from DR pain management and make the best out of it cause it here for ever but with a good frame of mind and not feeling sorry for my self has been more helpful I promise.

  33. I had three steroid shots in my neck two weeks apart for migraines it has helped me. Will someone please tell me how long it takes to get out of your system. I am hungry all the time. I try to chew gum eat things that are healthy. It is the worst feeling in the world. So, please how long will I have to feel this way it is an all day thing. Any help would be appreciated. I don’t want to get on diet pills they make you jittery I don’t need that Is there anything else I could take.

  34. I am scheduled for a lumbar epideral on Wed. After reading all this, I want to cancel. Would anyone recommend oral steroid pills?

    1. I have taken the oral steroid many of times and it doesn’t last long. So i’am going for lumbar epidural on the 11th i’am also scared but need some relief from this pain and sleepless nights. I just pray and leave it in gods hands.

        1. Steroid pills have certain risks, too. Weight gain, palpitations, high blood sugar/pressure. Now, listen, there are many people these injections have been a godsend for. My aunt had one and never had to have another. Don’t be scared. Talk to your doctor then make your decision.

    2. Barb
      I had one in lumbar area today. Go do it trust me it was the best thing I ever did.
      No pain at all except when they give the meds and that’s minimal and last only for a few mins.
      I’m already feeling much better.
      Good luck

  35. Hello to the individuals who have had epidural injections. I have had my third shot and it has been almost a month and has worked well. I did have a bad herniated disc L4 L5 and was a canidate for back surgery. No way!!!! Please keep in mind that you need to lose weight if you are overweight. I have lost 40lbs and i need 20 more to go. As of today i feel great and the injections have given me hope. steve

  36. I had steroid injections in my kneck the 28th of march. I will NEVER let them do this to me again. I was already in pain when they did the procedure but it was nothing compared to the pain I’m feeling now.My kneck and throat are still swollen{more than they were before}and the pain in my shoulders and my arms is so bad I can’t drive . I cant use my left arm at all. The pain is beyond words, i have never been in this much pain my life. The muscle spasms are worse than ever.I have been on pain meds for almost four years, I have tried heat,ice,soaking, massage you name it I have probably tried it. I would give anything for the slightest bit of relief. My head hurts so bad around the base of my skull, it feels like my brain is throbbing{ might sound unbelievable but true} I have never had a headache that wouldn’t go away before. I actually hurt to be touched,my body feels bruised and I’m so stiff. those injections are not for me. I wouldn’t wish this pain on my worst enemy. if anyone has found a way to stop or ease the pain please feel free to let me know what you tried I will try anything. I’ve been crying daily since I had this done. I have a high pain tolerance but this is more than I can handle. PLEASE SEND SUGGESTIONS FOR RELIEF!!!!! For anyone considering having this procedure think twice. If you do have it done I wish you the best of luck, hope it works you!

    1. I had my second cervical epidural a week and a half ago. I woke up in agony my right breast , shoulder arm and hand and it has not gotten better. It hurts to have water over my hand. It feels broken and numb. i went to see my doctor yesterday and he too said there is no way these symptoms have anything to do with the procedure. What I said… “I woke up to this pain” he then proceeded to tell me woman who have had trauma ( he must of read my personal file) make up pain. Wow just like you and this morning I have a blinding headache from my neck the one thing I had the shot to eliminate. And I’m making it up he says how can you make up such things and do specifically. Thank you at least I know I’m not alone. I have no relief I was hoping to find one!

  37. I had my first injection to my L5 when they were doing it I had a horrible pain I can not describe.. the doc said it was because the nerve was more inflammed then he had thought.. yes after the injection I thought I was cured like most of us do …JUST UNTIL THE ANESTH. Wears off.. for the next 24 to 48 hours I iced 20 min on and 20min off. Taking pain meds and resting. I’m on my 5th day and I feel like the pain is worse my bottom feels like there is a knife in it and the pain still shoots down my leg. I still have pressure in my back that folds me forward and my back…. well my back kills… I came off my meds for two days thinking I should be feeling better, but that was a bad idea.. even on the pain meds I’m in pain. I am sick of the meds by now and I’m sad but happy for those of you who felt good in 3 days. I see the doc on Thursday and I’m sure he will say let’s do another… but I’m exhausted from being in pain… I just wanted to post this because we are all together on this … I AM GOING TO DO ANOTHER, I HAVE LOST WEIGHT AND I DON’T NEED TO LOOSE ANYMORE THE DOC SAYS, I WILL DO P.T., AND I WILL TRY TO THINK POSITIVELY ABOUT THIS. BUT, could you if you read this say a prayer for me and everyone else that we can one day be pain free.?! I WILL FOR ALL OF YOU NOW AND FOREVER.

  38. Ok did my second one! Today MUCH BETTER… ITS AMAZING ALREADY THE DIFFERENCE. MY GOD I’M HAPPY THAT I WENT THROUGH WITH IT. It can only get better!
    Allana

    1. Good to hear Allana, i hope you continue to do well i also hope it works for me but i have to say i’am scared.

  39. Just wanted to share my experience with the epidural steroid injection. I recieved it about 14 days ago, and whatever, if any relief i recieved is gone. back to the same pain. Scared to get the second one becuase i had such a horrible experience with the first one. i have severe anxiety so i took valium prior to the appt. didnt do a bit of help. my problems are 4 herniated discs in my lumbar spine, L5-S1 being the symptomatic one. also have degenerative disc disease and hip tendonitis/bursitis all affecting my left side. anyways, the procedure went fine, she used some local numbing which i could barely feel, then inserted the needle, which also went fine. then it came time to inject the contrast and the cortisone. i practically passed out from the pain. i broke out into a sweat, started crying and could BARELY stay on the table. The doctor said she knew she got the rigth spot because of the pain, but it was one of the most unbearable experiences of my life. I am willing to try it again if i knew that it wouldnt hurt as bad, but im straight up scared. anyone else have this experience and went on to have success?

    1. Carrie, you have to try to relx your muscles when given the shot. If you tense up it will
      hurt alot more. I have had 6 lumbar injections in the past two yrs. Piece of Cake! Relax!!!

  40. Was recommended for epideral injection by my dr. for protruding discs in neck. Can anyone tell me how many injections and the cost

  41. I want to know, is Steroid Shot be come habit? and is it bad to have a shot ones year?
    please give me a answer!.

  42. I have a pinched nerve at the base of my spine with intense pain around my right knee cap and right hip and lower spine. The first epidural offered a little relief, but the second about 2 1/2 weeks later, was very helpful. I could easily tolerate what little residual pain remained and it disappeared for long periods after my taking just one ibuprofen. Now a few months later, the pain is moderate, but still not nearly at the level it had reached before the epidurals. I also had a mild twilight anesthesia administered both times just prior to the epidurals so there was no pain and I was in a light sleep for perhaps 10 or 15 minutes.

    1. hi i seen this comment on here i went last fri for same thing pain in hip kneee pain extremly bad but i had a kidney transplant aug 11 2012 so no meds for me it was painful and didnot help i go back this fri i sure hope second one helps in the am when i get out of bed my right knee hurts so bad i cannot walk was yours this way did your second injection help

  43. Hey Carrie,

    I Just recently had 2 steroid injections into my lower back. I had a bulging disc hitting my sciatic nerve. I was taking up to 8 Ultracet pills a day before having my injections. It’s been two weeks since my injections and I have yet to take 1 Ultracet pill. The pain in my lower back/legs has seemed to improve quite a bit. However, now my foot(left, that’s the side ive had all my problems in) hurts like hell at random times when walking on it. I just started physical therapy this week. We’ll see how I am a month from now. Gonna save my last injection(only allowed 3 per year) for when/if my pain comes back and then immediately follow with surgery. My type of surgery has a 95% success rate of fixing my problem and making my back/leg/foot function normal again… It’s just super expensive.

  44. I just had an epidural injection and it didnt work. Seems like Im in more pain. Is their light at the end of this tunnel? Ive suffered for so long with severe pain and Im way to young for this….please help!

  45. Ive had the steroid epidural injections for pain. I have gained so much weight. My face is so puffy and round and my stomach seems larger. How long will this puffiness last. I look like those little men on the Chocolate Factory…..HELP ME PLEASE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    1. Thats probably the 12 nuggets 2 cheeseburgers and double choc sundae you had on the way home ! Ow and u should stop drinking gravy

    2. Have you told your doctor? Steroids can make us retain fluid, I know…and even gain weight. I was on oral Predisone for a while and gained well…about 40 pounds. I’ve lost it and regained it twice. In addition to talking to your doc, try cutting back on salt. I hope you feel better soon!

  46. i had the last of my injections in march and wish i would have never did it! i have had nothing but problems. my ankles and wrists are aching. i have so much back pain and my legs are weak and tingling. i force myself to get up every morning and excersize. i don’t know what is happening. im only 52 and i just don’t know what to do next. i’m a very active person who has not been able do to much since my last shot! anybody have suggestions?

  47. It’s been about 1 month since my last steroid injection and I’m doing great. Sleeping fine. I take maybe 1 Aleve a day if my leg starts to bother me. Been going to physical therapy 3 days a week. I walk out of there every day feeling better. My Dr. told me it’s just gonna take time to get to 100% or 95%. I cannot complain about my injections. Maybe because i’m only 25, but the aftermath for me is very positive. Surgery is so far away from even considering.

  48. I have been dealing with pain in my lower back and down my left leg for three years now. I’m only 30 years old and I have had 4 injections. Not once have I had any relief from these shots. I’ve been to three different doctors, and they all say different things..but all agree I’m too young for surgery. I honestly don’t see another way. After my last shot 2 days ago, I have had an increase in pain and have not left my bed for more than 5 mins. Its horrible. I have a highly active job and I’m not sure if I will be able to return in two days. Pain killers and anit inflammatory pilss are not helping either. I feel doomed!

  49. I had mine today for sciatica and leg weakness due to degeneration around L5 (probably because of the 40 miles per week I used to run. I have had sciatica for over 2 years now. Oral prednisone did the trick … temporarily each time, but no long-term relief.

    I was very nervous … I really hate needles. My pulse went from 72 to 108 by the time they started. It do not hurt nearly as much as I expected. I did get a nice wave of hot sparks down my left let when they did the anaesthetic, but then it was fine. It was x-ray guided, and they let my 9-year-old daughter come in the room to watch (she wants to be a doctor).

    13 hours and I am getting great relief … it was 100% right after the procedure for 8 hours, and is now at 95%. Doctor said full relief would take 7-10 days, so I’m hopeful. I walked without a crutch this evening for the first time in 24 months and I even played a bit of badminton with the kids … for the first time in over 24 months. I just might have my life back.

  50. I am due to have the steroid injection soon following injuring my back resulting in a bulging disc causing sciatica. I am hopeful it will settle the problem down. However the only way a doctor can determine if this is a good option or surgery is needed is through an MRI scan – if you are still suffering and haven’t had an MRI, see a specialist and demand one immediately. How do I know this? I herniated the same disc about 4 years ago and had the surgery (a laminectomy) where the surgeon cut off the bits of the disc that had oozed out and were causing significant pain. It worked really well (I woke up and the pain was gone, fabulous) and I only have a recurrence now due to a silly injury. By the way I was 40 when I had the operation and both my sisters have had to have the same proceedure (we think there must be a genetic element to the weakness) and it has worked well for us all. I can’t understand why you might be too young for surgery ??! Get a good specialist and an MRI for a real answer. Good luck to all.

  51. I had a spinal injection 3 weeks ago after being in pain for mths L5-S1 Felt grt for 3 weeks now pain is back ;(

  52. I have degenerative disc disease in the cervical spine mild to moderate. I also have debilitating migraines, horrible shoulder and back pain, and some kind of auto-immune system disorder that is so far undiagnosed. They do not give me pain medications. They are planning on doing this epidural in the neck thing tomorrow and I am scared to death. I have had a failed epidural before. I think this is extreme. It seems to me that a much safer option, especially since my pain is so wide spread, would be pain medication. A lot of people are mentioning being on pain meds for years before their doctors resorted to these measures. “When conventional measures fail.”? Pain medication doesn’t make my pain go away, but it does take it to a tolerable level for me. How do I get my doctor to give me pain medication instead? They are also planning on doing this thing off an MRI that is 2 and a half years old!! I am scared to death.

  53. I had my third shot today, firt one was great. second one not so great and now i’m hoping third will be the best !!
    i’m very sure it helped reduce the inflmmation around my L5, L4 and S1 …. i’m now able to do alot more and basically off all my heavy norcatics that i have been taking for almost a year to manage the pain :)
    it will also pay you time to allow your disc if it want to ever move back or move partially back to place so if you ever decide to go with surgery it will be less invasive or less involved !!
    you just have to be lucky and get a good doctor who knos how to do them, with the aid of live image there shouldn’t be a reason why it might go bad !! … my second shot was done by an intern !! so that’s what went wrong
    i recommend it to anyone with lower back problems !!
    good luck to everyone

  54. First cervical steroid injection tomorrow morning…I HATE NEEDLES!! The thought of a needle going into my neck to spine is scaring the hell out of me! The thing that is bothering me about this, is this will only be a temporary fix…Dr. says I will more than likely be having surgery within 2 years anyway (So why subject me to this???) I know I am a big baby, but I am terrified of the possible pain of the injection. I am being “sedated” but seriously I am still going to know what they are doing to me! Please wish me luck!!!!

    1. Just wondering how you are doing now, two years after you were to get your first cervical injection? Did the injection work and have you had surgery by now? I feel like now like you stated when you wrote on July 11, 2011. God bless you and hope you are doing well !

  55. I had cervical and lumbar epideral shots . I haven’t had any improvements. I have herniated disc C2,3,4,5,6,7. I have spinal cord fusion 4-5 and 5-6. Now I have S2 and l5 pinched nerved and this all related to a work injury. My life has been a nightmare. After my surgery they said I would be back to normal . Now I have spinal cord damaged. I was wondering is there anything I can do that will not hurt me anymore.

  56. Had my first C-spine injection at C5-5 on Wed morning. Today is Sunday and the pain is no better still and has even gotten worse! I called the doc office Fri and was told it would get better over the weekend and this is normal. If I had known the pain had a potential to get WORSE I would never have done it! I don’t recommend this until you research and hear all the effects.

  57. i have herniated disc in l5 i had a epidual injection first of july it releaved the symptoms i was having , the symptoms i had were numbness in my right foot the toes,pain in both legs weakness, cramps in my legs going to my nips in both legs , cramps in my back both sides ,tingling in my left hand ,had another mri done and it showed that i have arthuritus on my lower back . the doctor thought i might have a pinched nerve , i also was wetting my pants when having to sneeze , now since i had a injectiondone i am having headaches everyday mostly on my left side shoulder pain ,neck pain pain in the back of my head ,bad leg cramps in both legs and feet back soreness in calves if legs from leg cramps

  58. I have suffered from rt lower back pain with siatica from time to time. It has been 24 hrs since my injection and I am much more pain now than i was before. Pain in my rt buttucks , upper inner thigh and down to my knee. Did my injection make my pain worse? Is that a posible side effect? I sure did not know the injection could make my pain worse. I have taken more pain meds today than I ever have.

  59. I have had injections in lower back which none of them has worked. I know cortisol is in the shot but don’t know what else. Where is the best facility to get an injection. I live in a rural community and the only place available for them is a pain clinic in a small town there are several of these places in our state. I have had back surgery and no relief since that I am told it is not failed back surgery but inflammation and pain from degenerative disease. I have been in pain and haven’t had a life for 18 months. Could someone please let me know where to go to get an injection that works?

  60. Hello Sorry to hear about all of you having pain. My husband is suffering from an epidural he had on June 21 2011 for leg pain. Now he has leg pain and back pain from the epidural. I asked him not to do this shot but he did. Our life is a mess now. We went to Lasar Spine Institute in Philladelphia. They seem reliable maybe some of you can call with your specific problems. They want to give my husband surgery but a surgeon we went to in NYU says he feels my husband does not need surgery. Good Luck to all. Post something if you get results to let me know.

  61. 4 years ago I had 2 injections into my lower spine. I am here to tell you this procedure saved my life since I was to the point of suicide from all the pain and inability to walk! I was very skeptical of the procedure. I didn’t get much relief from the first injection but the second one got me on my feet and I still have back pain but no pain in my leg anymore. I have told everyone that without the shots, I would not be alive today!
    Just Do It!
    If I ever get in that position again in my life, I will do it without any hesitation! :-)

  62. This procedure is very mild in comparison to an operation and the results are much better and quicker than a surgery. God Bless You All and The Doctors that helped me walk again!

  63. I am a 60 year old female and had my first epidural steroid injection for herniated L5, L6. Right back pain has eased, but I still have intense stabbing pain above pubic area when I try to turn over in bed. Severe pain, especially if I wake up and find I have been lying on my right side. I have very limited range of motion with my right leg and hip. All tests have pointed to the hip and SI joint are normal. Will the subsequent steroid injections help this? The pain at night is unbearable.

  64. I just want to say that I am so mad at the internet for making me so incredibly nervous about getting an epidural steroid injection. For those of you who are looking for comfort who are about to get this procedure done, let me just share my experience with you (just got it done about 5 hours ago). For one, the IV needle hurt worse than the epidural. I was sedated and the doctor numbed my back with lidocaine. I didn’t even feel the epidural needle. When they said they were done, I didn’t believe them. But we were done! As soon as I got to the recovery room, I started feeling some mild leg pain. My pain is getting progressively worse throughout the day as the lidocaine wears off. THIS IS NORMAL. You may feel pain (possibly worse than what you are normally used to) for 5-7 days after the procedure. Then you will start feeling relief. I am hoping this is the case, but the pain I am in is still tolerable. We will see. But the shot itself was nothing to worry about! Well worth it if I get to actually see some pain relief a week from now.

  65. I would like to have an apinion as a shot to my neck to relieve pain. I have herd from others the benifits they recieved from a botox injection and a epidurial shot, which do you think would be best for me with harsh neck pain, and what are pros and cons compared to each other. I welcome you to call me if you would be so kind. Thank You CJ 1(818) 337-9495

  66. had 1 injection 2 wks later it was wonderful…pain gone!! all of it. Pain back after 2 months of a GREAT relief. Had another one but doctor put it in a diff. location to see if the nerve was pinched in another place. But no relief…I was mad. Went back to doctor and will have injection in the orginal area that worked.
    Hey get these injections….they work when your doctor knows what area to inject you in. Most doctors don’t..sorry.
    Up to you to find a doctor who has done many of these injections.
    I will have one every 2 months forever if I could…I had my old body back.
    Only negative…weight gain
    Still worth every pound!!

  67. Hi.
    Can symtoms sometimes get worse before they get better?
    ..I have numbness in my foot and i was wondering if that’s alright? I have had 3 Cortisone shots and this happens.

    Thanks.

  68. I had an Epidural On Oct 3, 2011, I walk in with pain in my leg as I have for over five years and have had Epidurals for this about every six to nine months. Only this time I have been in bed since Oct 3, 2011. because if I stand or walk it is so painful , I am on five different pain medications and nothing takes the pain away completely. Of course after all the Epidurals I did receive in the past years this time my doctor was not there so it was a different doctor. There is nothing I have read or signed that states what happened to me is a possible side effect ??????????????? what to do now, I can’t stay in bed all my life I am only fifty.

  69. I had an injection in my neck C6-7 in August. I has relief within
    5 days. All of the numbness and tingling in my arm was gone and has
    Not come back. I still had the neck pain however so had
    a second injection this morning. I am hopeful that it will get rid
    of the neck pain. I got a bad headache from this injection but t that’s
    a rare side effect. Dr. Magnuson at Kootenai Medical Center’s Pain Clinic
    and the staff there are amazing. He’s the expert at these injections!

  70. I’ve had 9 cortisone shots since May in my lower back. They only last for 4-5 weeks.
    Dr. said no more shots for 3 months. Instead he wants to implant a neurostimulator in my lower back. Does anyone have one? Isn’t 9 shots in a short time too many? Why aren’t they working?

  71. i had a spinal block yesterday 11-8-11 for a pinched nerve or ploblem withc-5 and c-6
    It was a very bad experience, They went thur my neck, i was wide awake, they gave me nothing worth talking about when they gave me medicine to relax,nothing not even a little sleepy!!! wide awake. When he gave me that first shot i about came off the table!!!
    now have extreme head for the last 16 hours.. and i still have the numbness in my finger,,, Ok but can someone please tell me if i was suppossed to be some what sleepy or sedaited?? i am really pissed off about what happen to me..

  72. A neurosurgeon is performing my injection this Friday. He said that I will be sedated. To hear other peoples’ experiences really makes me hesitant to even go through with this. Is it very painful? Can I help out with a 5K the following morning?

  73. I had my first of three injections in my neck nine days ago. The pain and pressure in my neck was intense for that day but I had little to no pain the next two days. The actual procedure was not bad. I am hopeful that the pain will decrease more each time. I have alot of pain every day because of multiple issues but it’s worth it to try to lessen the pain if even just for a few hours, days or months.

  74. And I was not sedated, by my choice. They numbed the area which feels warm with a slight burning sensation followed by the injection. Just think of the person or place that brings you to an inner peace. :-)

  75. I’m on face book please try to link up with me .just got intro face book hope to chat to people who suffer from LPHS I’M in South Africa

  76. Please, PLEASE, PLEASE read about adhesive arachnoiditis before doing epidural steroid injections. Your pain is nothing now compared to what it could be. A progressive disease of your spinal canal.

  77. Matt –
    I had an epidural one week ago and am experiencing the same. I have been in bed for over a week and can only lay on my stomach for relief. Can’t sit, stand, drive! It is the worst tearful pain I have ever experienced. Worse than giving births to three children. According to my doctor, the epidural relieved the L4 bulding disk inflamation where the epidural was injected but it just made the nerves from my other 2 buldging disks more irritated. I am on lots of pain medication and 14 day steroid pack which I am still waiting for them to kick in. My doctor says rest, taking pain medication will help the pain subside and eventually building up the muscles in my core area. All I can say, I am desperately waiting for the pain to go away. I have a family and a job that I am not able to take care of and it is Christmas time! My doctor does not recommend me to get another epidural (and at this point, I definitely do not want one) and he did an MRI today which does not warrant surgery so I am not sure what my options are. I know our experience is not the norm but it really stinks!

  78. I have been getting epidural injections in my lower back for 12 years. I have been told be every Dr. I’ve had that I should only have 3-4 a year. I have only been totally sedated once. Most of the time the sedation is just to relax you. They numb the site of the injection, so the initial needle insertion does not hurt. You may feel pressure, though. When they inject the medicine, it brings my pain to the high level that brings me in for these shots. The pain is only while the medicine is being injected. (My Dr. will inject some, stop, inject more, stop, then finish.) The pain subsides to a dull pain after the injection. Although, sometimes the pain gets worse one day before it gets better, the end result is usually a big reduction in pain. I get a weekly massage for my condition and my masseuse cannot believe how well my body responds.
    I am not sure of the long term effects of this procedure, but the relief I get is well worth it. I would not have the amount of pain relief with out these injections. (I do yoga, walk, take medication, use ice alot, get massages and see a chiropractor. None of these things gives me the 1-3 month relief I get from these epidurals)
    I have had side effects: a horrible headache, facial flushing and insomnia, but these side effects only happened to me twice in 12 years.
    If you are in a high level of pain, I would recommend trying the injection. If your pain level is not high, I recommend trying other options.

  79. Had 1st , was fine after 3-4 days. 98% pain free. 2nd one done 5 weeks ago . Have been in pain since thanks to a headache that is worse than the back pain was caused by a puncture to the spinal fluid sac. A blood patch was performed that did no good at all.

  80. I have had four sciatic flare-ups in the last four decades. Each time I thought the pain would be stuck with me for the rest of my life. Each time I went to extremes trying to find a cure. The dumbest think was a chiropracter…wow was that dumb. I had the forture of being a swimming pool physical thereapist for several years where I met the top people in the field of backs. Here are some tips. Be carful stretching hamstrings, it is what often startes the flare-up. Often deep, deep sleep helps. Several valium with lunesta is not dangerous but allows the muscles to relax. I finnaly made it to the top back dorctor in the country, Barth Greene. He is the professor emeratis for the profession. When I finally got to see him he put me on celebrex similar to ibuprophen), told me that when the inflamation disapeared the pain would disapear, and when the pain disapeared the foot drop paralyisis would also disapear. He was right, the rest were wrong. Most backs will heal on their own give time, so don’t over treat. I have no back pain now.

  81. Marie, I felt like i was reading my own story. It has been 72 hrs since my second injection and i feel terrible. I too cannot drive or sit. It makes it impossible to work or get ready for Christmas ( 3 kids) I had microdysectomy surgery for l5 s1 12/23/10. It was successful for 8 months and then reherniated. This makes my second Christmas dealing with this. I am considering a second opinion for my condition. I refuse to believe i have to live with this. I am 42 years young!!!

  82. I am scheduled for 3rd series of “transforminal epidurals”,the 1st set-3 epidural shots in a row for lower,L-3,L-4,L-5/s-1,I was lightly sedated the 1st time,approx 10 mos. ago,the results were less pain but not what I hoped for-NO pain,2nd procedure was appeox. 3 mos. ago. This time I was sedated w/I.V. verced and had 4 shots,compared to giving birth-I’d rather have a baby!I am receiving some relief from the series of shots but not enough to have any pain-free life.I had thought the shots would I really hoped I’d be able to live w/o pain meds-I’LL ENDURE THIS 3RD SET ON jAN.10-12 AND AT least lower the meds for a couple of weeks! Just to wake-up with NO pain,forgot what that is it’s been so long!(have degen. disc in lower back from l-2 dwn to s-1,bone spurs in upper and lower back,ostioarthritis in back,hands n knees,had biggest spur on thumb surgically removed March,2011-great results from that,now if the rest could only be that simple!

  83. I had one shot given to me about 4 weeks ago the pain was very mild,went home relax for maybe 1 hour or so went to work the following day, with no pain for only a week, know i need to go back for 2 more shots hope the pain disappears for a while, the problem that i encountered was that i had problems with digestion (constipation ) very bad, i am about to go see my general provider for a strong medication….

  84. I had an epidural about 38hrs ago.I felt pain thru out d procedure-frm d needle pierce to d release of d fluid into my back.D pain in my lower back is abit worse than b4 d injection especially deep inside around d injectn site.I also hv a certain sensation (ranges frm numbness 2 painful)down my left leg(only since d injection)
    Has any had same experience?D injectn ws meant 2relieve d pain not creat a pain of its own

  85. I am going to have an epidural injection in my neck but the doctor is going through the front of my neck. I had six cervical surgeries and have too much scar tissue to go through the back. Does anyone know someone who had this procedure through the front. I would like to know how it turned out.

  86. On Oct 2011 I was at work and all in one shot I couldn’t work by lower back was so painful
    I couldn’t finish my work my boss was away at the time I was the supsvior so I stay on the job in pain.Went to the hosptial in my town all they did was ran some test and gave me medicine to comfort the pain so I went tthe near clinic they check out and send me to a doctor for the injections on my lower back my first one was 12-15-11 ,2-15-12 second one andthe last was 312 12 . the firstlast me me 4weeks of pain free the next was just 2 week
    the last one I don’t know yet if any come help me see I have muscle spasms in both legs tingle, sharp pain, weakness,I use a walker to walk with because my balance isn’t to great I need help with everyday activities I been to doctors in the hosptial for a week all they can tell is wait for my test come back. I am tired that one day I will wake up and can’t move my legs at all please help Iam very depress at time my family try very hard to understand but they are don’t know how I feelk being in pain everyday

    1. sheila,what you have sounds like herniated disk/disks,this will cause muscle spaz/tingles and all sorts of pains and sensations.You most likley will need to do physio therapy asap,and dont do anything that causes increased pain,i know thats hard when you are in cronic pain,but disks can take months to years to heal,most heal in 3-6months.Since you have been in pain for so long they may recommend surgery,BUT MAKE SURE you try ALL other therapys first.And if you need more injections make sure they dont inject KENALOG,this is now banned for epidural use but doctors are unawware of this fact! Hold on to hope,i had the same pains you describe for 11months with my back,every second,everyday PAIN! yes very very depressing and life changing.heat pacs and ice pacs can help a little also.There is also a device called a TENS UNIT,you can wear it on you,it sends electric pulses and they can decrease the pain.Also pray! hope you are well soon,keep enduring,eat healthy organic food,this will also help the mind and body.

  87. I had my c6 c7 disc rupture which was confirmed by MRI. Doc suggested epi injections to the nerve root. 12 hours after the shot no relief, but I am hopeful that it starts to take effect in the next fews days, 2nd shot scheduled for 2 wks from today. I’ve had broken bones, torn ligaments, ACL and AC joint surgery, appendicemy and I have to say this is the worst overall pain I have had in my life simply due to the constant driving and shooting pains in my back/arms that is relentless. 2 weeks into the pain and I average about 2-3 hours sleep per night, oxycodone is the reason I even get that. Btw, the shot is nothing, I didnt even know it happened.

  88. they gay my sister a spinal injection while she was going to give birth, the brain stops working and she stops breathing, she wake up after 24hrs, but now she lay at hospital, she cant speak, she cant stay stable, she cant eat, she is kicking the whole day, every day, when i look at her i always cry, i dont know what did the doctors and nurses do, please help me, she is my only sister i love more than any one else, please help me.

  89. I just had this done yesterday, for my neck problems. I was skeptical about whether or not the pain in my shoulder/neck/arm was the problem–I am no longer conflicted. When I got home I knew immediately that was the cause of my pain–the injection of the lidocaine proved it–i was pain free. After a couple of hours the lidocaine wore off and i was in pain again, actually a little more sharply than before–but the doctor said this would happen and it would take a couple of days for the injection to work. However, taking an ibuprofen worked completely–no pain. BTW, I have a disc bulge/herniation/bone protusion on c3-c5.

    This morning I woke with virtually, NO PAIN! As I write this i am smiling i am so happy. I am sitting here typing this out, with my head down in NO PAIN! Friggin Fantastic!. I hope i am one of the few patients that this last for months rather than just weeks. I have an appointment on the 18th of next month with a neurosurgeon for surgery. I also have another shot scheduled for the 4th of next month. I will go get it done. I would suggest sedation though. It can be a harrowing experience for the squeamish. There is some pain involved. You do “feel” the administration of the lidocaine and the steroid. The lidocaine stings (not bad). The injection of the steroid is like a golf ball sized pressure at the site of administration. To say its “pain less” is an understatement. If you have a low tolerance for pain–ask for conscious sedation. You still need to stay focused as much as you can on the procedure though. Through my research, its important to let the doctor know if you are experiencing pain.

    Side effects were limited to yesterday. I got blurred vision and one instance of leg weakness (felt like a noodle, wouldn’t work properly). This would all dissipate went i laid down. But they are gone today. Also, I still feel a little pain in the neck at the site of the problem–but like i said, anti-inflamatories take that away completely.

    Like the article said though, this is temporary and you have to be diligent about getting the root caused fixed. I know that the more i get these shots, the more likely to have a serious complication from it. An analogy would be imagine someone with an arrow shooting a bullseye above your head. If they shoot the bullseye, you are pain free, but every now and then they are gonna miss, causing some serious damage. So it is best to continue evaluation and pushing for resolution of the cause, even though you are symptom free.

    Hope this helps.

  90. I just had an epidural steroid injection for lower back and leg pain and my pain is ten times worse since I got the injection. Prior to the injection I could lay down and relieve the pain, but now the pain in sitting, standing, walking or laying down…

  91. Many people get this invasive procedure with out waring of the long term effects. ($$$) I revived ONE epidural during labor like 1,000’s i know. i got Arachnoiditis from one EPI. Learn the truth and the deep dark secret they dont want you to know. Read the testimonials from 1,000’s.Arachnoiditis is relatively Unknown, Unreported, and Unrecognized, by the physicians and surgeons treating patients with Arachnoiditis or improperly diagnosed, they continue to “explore” or perform invasive procedures, which only causes the Arachnoiditis to progress to the next level. Epidural steroid injections should be avoided unless the attending physician can guarantee that the injection does not contain ethylene glycols of any kind (Depo-Medrol®, Depo-Medrone®, Aristocort® and Methylprednisolone Suspension®). Then only if fluoroscopy is used to guide the injection. The likelihood of further injury is just to great in most instances. epidurals are not Fda approved tell May 2012 only with emg guidance. Did they tell you that??

  92. I had an MRI & and an xray on the same day. DR says i have a ruptured disc. so gets me signed up for a shot of cortisone. never felt a thing during the shot. felt ok for about a week. about 10 days later I started haveing severe pain in my hip,groing & knee on a Monday. and i mean it hurt. Tuesday i called & said I can’t wait until friday for the 2nd shot so they moved it to thursday…..big deal. So i suffered & barely could walk becuase of the leg pain, anyway i had the 2nd shot 11 days ago & i am still haveing severe pain in knee and Groing area. i went to the DR & he wants to see me in 2 weeks. he wants me to stretch & exercise it. he doesn’t want to give me a 3rd shot becuase he says i can only have so many. that was 3 days ago & my knee & leg are killing me. i felt the 2nd shot especially when he injected the steroid it felt like a balloon was blowing up in my back & it burned a little. but the leg pain is killing me. any suggestions? also i am 44 and have had back issues for 20+ years & have decided to try to do something about it.

  93. I had a steroid injection today for compression of the nerve at C6. I have been having sharp pain across my right shoulder, down my tricep and into my ring and little fingers. The doctor injected me from the front of my neck. I was terrified hearing the details of the procedure, but it was not as bad as it might seem. (I was assuming the injection was going into the back of my neck.) The Lidocaine injection was the only painful (minor) part. There was discomfort and strange sensations as the needle was placed, the dye was injected and then the steroid itself. The doctor hit the nerve a couple of times which sent a jolt down my arm, but it assured me he was in the right place. I would say it is not as painful or uncomfortable as your imagination might assert. It all happens quickly. I’ll update with results in a week or two.

  94. I had a epidural steriod on feb. 2012 . Went to er. next day claw hand on rt. side . Arm numb droppy eye 2 fingers numb 3 with needle pain Loss of bladder control .Ihave much muscle pain. constant pain 24-7 sleepless nights was told in er. after mri dye test doctor had penetrated my spinal cord and ijected steriod . was told damage could be permanent I also have shocks that run the length of my body when i bend my head over to look down Never Agin——–

  95. I have had two cervical epidurals – one in feb 2012 and the second in march of 2012. my doctor wants to a third and NO WAY. i started out as a 98 pound 5 foot one inch female and ended up 115 pounds ALL IN TUMMY!!! it started like 3 weeks after my second – i was gaining 1/2 pound to a pound a day. this is a very big deal to me because none of my clothes fit and i have been the same weight for about 20 years. i also can’t control my body temp, have VERY frequent urination (four times an hour), muscle soreness and a whole host of other delightful s/e. i got a tiny bit of relief but honestly, he s/e aren’t worth it!!!

  96. I pray that we all will one day get better. It’s a very depressing,and painfull thing we all are going thru. The worse part is we really don’t know if we’ll ever get better and our doctors don’t either. No one understands what we all go through until they experince it themselves. Alot of times we feel so depress,because it has tooken so much out of our lives.The only thing I can think of, is don’t give up and have faith in GOD. May God Bless us all!!!

  97. L5-S1 severe disc herniation with 3 months of sciatica. I could not stand more than 5 minutes or walk greater than 1 block without stabbing and burning pain in the back of my leg with numbness down to my right pinky toe. S1 epidural steroid injection 2 days ago with significant pain relief, but some increased numbness following the injection. The injection was completely painless and was done using floroscopic guidance. I had intravenous versed to relax the muscles around the injection site in hopes of preventing any muscle injury near site and I think it helped make the actual injection less painful as it goes through deep muscles. Ask your nurse or the physician performing the injection a lot of questions about what might make the injection more tolerable during and after. Some side effects from the steroids, anxiety and increased concentration problems which have continued through today. I woke up with little or no pain and was able to sleep on my right (affected) side for the first time in 3 months.
    If you have a herniated disk the extruded disk material will eventually be reabsorbed by the body and the pain will end. This usually occurs within several months. With severe herniations and in some people for unknown reasons the body takes a long time to reabsorb the disc material. With lumbar/sacral and lumbar disc herinations the idea is to use the localized steroids (strong anti-inflamatory) to calm the irritation of the sciatic nerve which causes the pain and numbness in the leg. The relatively painless steroid injections help to put off or prevent the need for surgery. Studies show that people with herniated disks who have surgery and those who do not have surgery have the same outcome within a year or so from herniation. If you have a herniated spinal disk causing sciaticathat does not respond to rest, ice and physical therapy within several months ask for an MRI or CT scan for clear diagnosis and go ahead with the steroid injections if that is what your orthopedic doctor recommends. There is a lot of good information about the use and reasons for epidural steroid injections on reputable web-sites. Try not to let fear or reports of horrible responses prevent trying ESI because between 50-70% of the time they work to prolong or prevent the need for spinal surgery which can have significant side effects.

    1. Dear Jen,
      I read most of the comments on this web site and yours was the most comforting one for me. I have mild herniated discs in my lower back and pain in my right side above my hip which I think might be Sciatica. After 6 month pain , I got my first Epidural/cortisone injection last week and now after a week I am not pain free. But, your suggestion to let the inflammation heal over time by body natural defense, might make more sense. Are you feeling better now? Thanks

  98. The Epidural SteroidInjection helps some people but not all. Everyone is different,and everyone doesn’t get relief from this injection but I advise anyone who’s never had this procedure at least try it once. You just never know, you may be one of the lucky ones. May God Bless You All!!!

  99. I have had a bulging disc disrupting my sciatic nerve running down my left leg for months now but had gotton so bad in the past 2 weeks nothing was working even strong pain meds. Had my first injection in my lumbar spine almost 3 days ago now. The procedure was a piece of cake. No pain expect a slight pinch with the lidocaine injection beforehand. He walked me through the whole procedure with the x-ray video and everything and did not feel much more then a feeling of some fluid running down my lower back. No pain afterwards and pain has not been completely cured in my left leg, but it was said to give it 1-2 weeks to see full results. I have seen some improvement to the point of being able to walk slightly and stand for more then a minute.
    Seemed like an easy and painless procedure I will recommend barring non-relief from my symptoms.

  100. I had this done yesterday and had a horrible headache. The injections were done on the left and now my left side including my face is weak and stiff. Obviously these injections are expensive and mostly an insurance scam. Do some investigating and you’ll see it is all under investigation by the FDA. If I felt a little better I would twist the doctors head off.

  101. I had a bulging disc between L-4 and L-5 back in 95. Did therapy, went back to work(I am A Plumber by trade), and ruptured it. (Setting a 50 gal hwt) Workers comp and they sucked. Was off 2 yrs waiting on them and Dr.s. First time they tried the laser on me. Out of 99.996, it made me hurt worst. almost 7 months later the did surgery and removed part of the disc. Went thru a month of 8 hour day therapy. Learned to deal with a pain level most the time of 5. Now I am 48 and have 2 ruptured and one torn right above the first. I have had all 3 shots they can give you. The second time I got 6. It was better till I got active. Then went right back. 3rd time,6 shots, made the bottom of my ass hurt worst. So now I sit on level 6 pain. More if I get active. Getting hard to get out of bed, get dressed, little normal things. Always irritable. I have stage 5 chirrosis of the liver, so they won’t give me much for pain. Go see the Dr. This Friday to see what is next. Surgery more than likely. I do hope that anyone that has had the procedure, feels better and it stays that way for you.

  102. I have a bulging disc on my lower back.Im going into get the steriod injection on the 29th off July 2012.Could you tell me was this bulging disc due to haveing a section with my daughter.I had an awful pain in my shoulder before she was brought out and i was told that it was because my womb was open.The pain was awful i thought i was going to faint.i was obvouisly dopped out in thertre it stoped.I had bad pre aclamsia,so delivery had to be very quick.

  103. My mom just got an epidural shot today we jusy got home I went to change came back to the living room to find her passed out on the floor it took about 20seconds to get any response..is that normal and she has asthma she was short of breath so I gave her inhaler..is all this normal…im scared

  104. Ive heard conflicting information from people, If you get a pain blocker in your back can you continue to go to chiroprator and be decompressed

  105. I started seeing a pain specialist again in Jan 2012 for back pain that was going down my lt leg. I had already had numbness in my lower inside leg with p/n at my ankle. I started this bcause 2008 pain went up leg as i stepped down on left foot. After trying other conervative measures DRX 9000, chiro, last Nov i started not being ale to walk very well, but had to finish PT for rotator cuff. I had received EPIDURALS before and remembered rceiving them in succession of 3 within 6 months. This time I received an injection in Jan, March and June. And I am beside myself with pain in my back and both buttocks and legs. I also previosly had several docs tell me to corrct my spondylothesis I would have to have decompression and fusion which to me was not an option that’s the reason for trying the injections again. However I am going to seek th advice of 2 other surgeons one from a dr from Hosp for Spec Surgery NYC. Wish me luck!! I hope tobe walking, dancing, swimming biking again SOON.

  106. I had my first shot 3 days ago the experience was horrible and very painful. Since the shot i have been in so much pain, the pain has been worse i cant sleep i cant hardly walk. Know matter what position i sit or lay it doesnt give me no relief. My second one is in a week and honestly i dont think im gonna get it done.

  107. i have cervical spondylosis with right c6 trapped nerve ive had this for four years tried all kinds of treatments none have worked, the medication i was on was addictive so i cut down the doses and only take them if im bad, went for a ct guided epidural injection two weeks ago had no pain for four days only picked up a toy off the floor and the neck pain is back and so is the numbness in the arm and holding things for too long i get pins and needles in my hand (which never really went away ) my lower back has kicked off and im getting a funny pain in my right leg so i dont know what my specilist is going to do now theres nothing really much left she can suggest other than operation and acupuncture, :(

  108. ive had a epi back in DEC. THE PAIN ON MY RIGHT SIDE OF MY LUMBAR IT STILL PAINING ME. NO MEDS OR NOTHING DOES ANY GOOD. SOMETIMES I GET A HAMMER AND HIT WHERE THAT PAIN IS AT. TELL ME WHAT TO DO ABOUT THIS . I HAVE AN APPOINTMENT WITH ANOTHER ORTHOPEDIC NEXT YEAR IN JAN. THATS TO LONG.

  109. I had my first epidural in my lower back yesterday morning I was suppose to get it in my t5t4 first but the docter wanted to do the less painful one for my first injection. So far I am in more pain since having it done im suppose to have 9 injections to 3 disc not sure if I should continue. Any body have any advice whom has gone through this would be appriated.

  110. I am supposed to have a epidural steroid shot on Friday for a p pinch nerve in my l4 region.. I hv numbness in my left leg sometimes but it does not really slow me down from everyday activity. Should I get this done? Please give me feed back… it doesn’t sound to promising.. really don’t want the side effects I’m reading about on this site.

  111. I’m 25 suffering from terrible lower back pain, I received over 6 epidural injections that worked great. I would get an injection and be pain free for at least 3 months; however a few days ago I slipped n fell in my back my pain came back, I decided to go for an epidural since I’ve had great result; worst mistake ever I don’t know what went wrong but I am in unbearable pain in both my legs and back, I can’t move or put any pressure on my legs.. Im extremely scared a nerve might have got damaged and now I’m really messed up.. I will be calling my dc first thing in the am…

  112. Fell at work in July PT vaguely improving…c3-4 l 4 5 6. Trying esi per Dr. on Friday. Can someone tell me how much it really helps and if I will be better.

  113. I recently went in for a lumbar epidural cortisone injection. Due to much scoliosis scar tissue, the doctor could perform the procedure after several attempts. Has anyone had this experience? If so, what else can be done for the pain?

  114. I had cervical stenosis measuring 8mm-8mm-6mm. I had the nerve block shot in the neck and I’m doing great. The tension in the neck and headaches all disappeared. I couldn’t be happier. I’m golfing working and living a great life. I hope Y’all get the same results. Don’t forget moving around is the best medicine.

  115. hello , i has my first esi I’m in mire pain than when i enterd the docs office right leg is stii , musles spasm my life is miserable. Not to mention no sex life every postion hurts but husband is hanging inthere with me my feet have swoolen up right foot shouls i calll the doctors office, No sleep at all;since the injection i do not know what to do .Help!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  116. Had surgery 2-yrs. ago, I have a recurrent disc problem in the lower back. Should I get a injection, or go back and let them fix it. Or do you think i might need a fusion! Is an injection a waste time!

  117. I have severe arthritis in my whole spine as well as my right shoulder and also been diagnosed with degenerative disc disease, bulging discs and so on. I have been getting all sorts of injections for over 15 years now. at this point they are burning the nerves in my mid and lower back, but all of a sudden my thumb is numb and my arm keeps going to sleep. got an epidural flood last week and another one today. MRI is scheduled for next week so the doc can see what kind of issue I am looking at now. go back after that to schedule surgery from the sounds of it. the injections usually work, but depending on what the issue is, are mostly temporary solutions. since the RF (burning the nerves), this is probably the longest I have gone without major pain.

  118. I am getting my first shot soon in the lower back. Hope it works and hope like hell it doesn’t hurt like I have been reading. I am getting it done at Neuro Spine. I Have been in pain since November and with all the insurance and doctors screwing around with everything and taking there time sucking every last dime out of the insurance company . I am going to get shot in the back for pain management and the doctor said if it doesn’t help after second set of shots then we are going to talk about surgery. So as soon as I get the injections I will post on here again to let everybody know how it went.

    I just wish people would post what place did the injections and doctor did them so other people would know if they are going to a good doctor. but I will let everybody know how everything went and who did it.

  119. I’ve had 1 epidural, when having a baby, with no sedation, and they punctured my spinal column. I could not lift my head off the pillow. The anesthesiologist had to do a blood patch as I was leaking spinal fluid. I was so scared to get another one. So it is now 29 years later and I’ve now had 2 for my lower back, radiating pain down leg. They went into the L5-S1 joint. What a difference it is with sedation. I woke up and said, it is already over? No pain, no headache. When all the anesthesia wore off, the pain was still there. : ( I went back 4 weeks later and had a 2nd one, this time in the L4-L5 joint. YEAH!. First time without constant pain down my leg, which is worse when laying down, so I got some real rest… for 10 days. The pain is coming back very quickly.

    I’ve read most of the posts. I could identify with most of you.

    I was thrown off a house when I was 12 onto hardpan, right on my low back. By the time I was 19, my L5-S1 was so narrowed, the Doc couldn’t find it on an x-ray. I sewed for a living and that is in the top 5 (#2) of worse professions for posture. Feet and hands both in front of you, hunched over to see. Your weight is not over your hips. I worked next to a drapery factory and every one of the old ladies working there had hunchbacks. Real hunchbacks. We young adults kind of laughed and said that was us in 60 years. Well, it only took 30 years. Cervical, Thoracic, and total Lumbar DDD.
    I went to the spine clinic at OHSU to get more help than my Doctor could give. I have pretty much been taking opiates full time for the past 18 years, but they no longer help. I can’t drive, walk around the block, or sleep. In trying to describe the pain, where it travels, and how much it worsens at night, when I lay down, after being inactive all day. So I drive 250 miles to see The Specialist. Orthopedic Surgeon, Paolo Antonio R Punsalan, MD, looked at my MRI and asked….. ARE YOU SURE THE PAIN IS IN YOUR RIGHT LEG?!?? THE PAIN SHOULD BE IN YOUR LEFT LEG??! I was stunned. I am sitting on his table, rubbing my right knee and thigh and he is trying to insist that the pain is on the left side. Granted, I do have stenosis on that side, but I’m pretty sure I know where the pain is. And there is no reflex on that right knee or ankle. He scratched his head and referred me back to a pain specialist. He even wrote on the referral that it includes… a pain psychology consult. I’m imagining the pain on the right side, because it should be down the left side. It was a 4 year old MRI. I told him something had changed in my pain over the last 2 years. He was supposed to be a specialist.

    I will probably need to get a nerve study done now, which I am really afraid of. My pain tolerance is so low after being in pain for so long and having fibromyalgia and peripheral neuropathy. the anesthesiologist thinks that it’s a nerve root compression and there is so much weakness in my leg.

    All this to say, keep looking for the right doctor. If your doctor can’t find the problem, or doesn’t believe you, look for another doctor. Ask for a 2nd, 3rd, or 4th opinion. Back problems are really tricky, and many doctors see so many frauds looking for pain meds that they are suspect fraud in general. My friend can hardly work anymore and his doctor wants him to get steroid injections (at 1800.00 ea.). He won’t give him any pain medications, even though he has been going to a chiropractor and gotten other injections. Because of the few addicts, it makes it hard to get the help you need to keep working.

    That’s my comment. As you can tell, I don’t get out much and converse with many people anymore. Another side effect of chronic back pain.

  120. Had epidural done 3 weeks ago. First couple of days were rough, but great after that….slept good for a week with no pain. Then 19 days in I went back to work, roofing. I have unable to stand straight up ever since. This pain is much more intense and in a different spot. Feels like someone hit me with 2×4 right above my butt. If I lay down on floor on my belly, I have pains that bring me to hold my breath and paralyzing pain.
    Is this the shot, or just different injury?

  121. Epidural for L4 & L5 bulging disks and stenosis. Pudendal nerve block done same day.
    Next day had 85% pain releif on back and

  122. Issues: bulging disks on L4 and L5, also Stenosis causing acute lower back pain. Suspected Pudendal nerve pressure ,based on perineal pressure and aching, burning during urination and sex, combined with bilateral foot and shin numbness. I cleaned my garage and found myself on my back for 22 to 23 hours per day for last 12 weeks.

    Was misdiagnosed with interstitial cystitis (IC) for 6 years, previous 2 years with prostatitis, total 8 years of (occasionally unmanageable) pain treated by pain mgmt doc, Urologist with instillations directly into bladder of various “cocktails”, oral Lyrica, Gabapenten, Elmiron, hydroxyzine, caudal injections and half year bouts with super antibiotics that would kill a bug within miles. It’s amazing what pain does to your body, mind and soul. A very Frustrated pain mgmt doc said you need to go to UCLA and get this figured out as pain was increasing.

    Fast forward to results of an MRI of spine some 12 weeks ago, showing bulging disks and Stenosis. UCLA Pain Doc arranged an Epidural and Pudendal Nerve block last week. Next day after the sedated Outpatient procedure I had 85% pain relief, next day almost 100% pain relief. Still enjoying lower back without pain, however, perineal pressure started creeping back after 3 days, by end of 4 day, it all wore off. Lower back pain still gone. So, suspected Pudendal nerve “issue”. UCLA urologist arranged appt with Neurosurgeon there and seeing him next week.

    Anyone else going to UCLA who has experience with the appropriate docs? Or can anyone suggest a sharp doc in the “OC”,a little closer to the ranch.

    Thanks

  123. The steroids used for ESI’s are not FDA approved for epidural administration. In fact the makers of both Kenalog and DepoMedrol are on record warning doctors that these products are not recommended by them due to reports of severe adverse events. Since DepoMedrol is a particulate it may cause a sudden heart attack or stroke if accidentally injected into a vein or artary. If steroids are accidentally injected intrathecally, (inside the spinal cord) or if you suffer a bloody tap or puncture where blood and steroid enters the spinal cord, there is a very good chance you may develop a severe immuno reaction that will cause chemical meningitis resulting in Arachnoiditis which cannot be ever cured. The horrific pain of Arachnoiditis is hell on Earth with many suicides. ESI’s are a scam. Many who have posted here may not even be real patients. ESI’s do not cure anything… they do not reduce the need for surgery… they are not FDA approved for safety or efficacy… you are not being given proper informed consent. The risks do outweigh the short term benefit. Don’t believe it? Look it up…

  124. I am in a nursing home because of having a lumbar epidural for pain. I had the epidural in early Jan. 2014 and ended up in the ER because I was not able to communicate and unable to remember. I just now have started being able to read again, I have always been able to write somewhat. After 1.5 months I will be going home in a day or two but with limits. Since my memory is still bad I will not be cooking. My emotions have been erratic but that could be my situation and not the medication.

  125. Lying down resting after first epidural injection in L3/4 today, had same injection in L5/S1 last Tues, which was 3rd in that disc since last Aug, then having L 4/5 done next Thurs. Felt lot better after injection last week but once returned to work last Thurs pain really bad again by midday each day as can’t sit anymore for long periods, so stand all day. Doctor decided to try injection at all 3 levels and radiologist doctor agreed as all 3 bulging. I am on slow release 25 mcg durogesic every 3 days and also take endep and panadeine forte straight after work each day and basically cook dinner, then lie down till go bed early. Have no quality of life at moment and have 7 mths to go till having anterior lumber fusion as 12 mth wait as pre existing, and don’t have $80000 to pay for op.

  126. Just had an steroidal epidural a few days ago. I was confident about my doctor and I think the procedure was professional and done well. I had three bulging disks in bad shape, but the L5 was the one that they thought was causing the excruciating pain – in the MRI it shows the L5 pinched between the si bone and a nerve bundle. My doctor said that 99% of patients with this type of pinched nerve would do the epidural. The plan is to get the pain under control, get off the anti-inflammatories and pain meds and see how my body responds. For me, the epidural seems to be effective, but as others have mentioned, there is still some remaining pain and the Norco pain killers tend to cause me some constipation-related pain, mostly in the early morning not so much when I’m on my feet moving around. So the day after the epidural, my back felt better, but I still had a bit of a dull pain because of that. I’m hoping that since I can stop taking the drugs, I will start to feel more like my normal self. My doctor told me that the epidural should really “kick in” after a few days so this weekend should be telling, but I have noticed a reduction in pain. A lot of doctors don’t tell you the negatives about taking some of the medications, and the problem for me has been, I’ve taken so many different antibiotics and anti-inflammatories, It’s hard to know how I feel and why all of the time. If anyone can tell me how their digestion and all of that worked after they stopped the pain pills, I’d be happy to get that reassurance. Thanks!

  127. I’m sorry about your son. I know how he feels. I am 32 and have 3 young sons and was always very active and was in a boating accident 2 yrs ago. I have servere spinal damage. I’ve had one surjury. I’m allergic to steriods so can’t be treated that way. Are these blocks your son has a steriod drug? Does it make the pain worse? See I had one injection and I felt great for a month then the next I had severe pain and was hospitalized for 2 weeks then we tried oral steriods and had the same reaction. From what I was told it was a rare reation. The steriods can attack the damaged nerves. I wish u and your son much luck.I know its hard. Jennifer

  128. I had a 3 series of shots and have been able to rest and use my back normaly now since the shots! Before I could not sleep confotably or just sit with out being in excrutiating pain. The shots worked well for me.

  129. My son has Loin Pain Hematuria syndrome. Please if any one can tell us who at Cleveland Clinic diagnosed their loved one. My son is being seen at the Clinic now…..His Nephrologist is doing nothing to help. I may have to take him to Ohio State to see Dr. Hebert. But he is already at Cleveland Clinic..and we would like to stay in Cleveland if possible. Drew attempted suicide in March of this year because of this pain. Celiac plexusx Blocks at the clinic have not gone well. Last one caused an infection, spinal headache and back pain. He ended up in the Clinic for 2 days. Still they will not direct us to the right people to consider an auto kidney trainsplant. They act as if they have never heard of it. The person on this website who said they had been diagnosed at the Cleveland Clinic has a disabled email.

    I would appriciate any help that you may have to offer. This disease has been a nightmare for Drew and his entire family.

    Thank you.

  130. I have had pain in my neck and left shoulder for the past year. I have been to the family Dr. many times and prescribed muscle relaxers and physical therapy. After this wasn’t working I had a MRI performed and it showed my disk between C5/C6 was herniated.

    I went to a Orthapedic Surgeon and he recommended having a epidural shot. I went and saw a pain specialist and he also recommended the shot.

    Last Friday I went into surgical services at the hospital and the Anesteioligist gave a epidual shot. Getting the shot did not hurt and the whole process was much less painful than I expected.

    It’s been 3 days and I really haven’t noticed a lot of improvement. I am going to give it another week and then go and see the Anesteioligist for follow up. If I dont feel any improvement, then I’ll probrably go for another shot in a couple more week.

    I hope this helps.

  131. The injection is uncomfortable but tolerable , I was extremely nervous about it myself and found it to be not as bad as I thought it would be. I am pain free but I an still having issues with numbness. Good Luck.

  132. these injections can make your condition worse or cause a rupture to get larger because you are not feeling pain and do things that you would not do when feeling the pain, medications is much better as it relieves the pain but not for days on end where you may lift something heavy or do some activity that will cause futher damage

  133. I had the shots a few days ago and I feel great. I was suffering from sciatica due to a pinched nerve for 5 months. Tried everything first medication, physical therapy you name it. This is like a miracle. I am just sorry I didn’t do it sooner.

  134. I am not sure about this procedure. I have a very low tolerance for pain and explained that to the Doctor. I am afraid to have this done. What to do? I will call to talk with the nurse. The shoulder pain radiating from my neck.
    I have had it for 8 months now. I started PT last week and the heat compress feels good but that’s about it. Any helpful advice? Is the injection painful????

  135. I have a stiff sore neck and hand and arm numbness from a C5-C7 fusion. Physical therapy helps keep the pain and numbness from being worse, yet is not improving the situation. I had an epidural steroid injection this morning. The procedure took about 10 minutes. 3 hours out and my neck is less stiff and painful. My doctor said it could take about 5-7 days before I really feel a relief from the injection. Looking forward to sleeping at night with my arms and hands feeling as if they are intact!

  136. I had an Epi. on my neck last week. I have since had
    trouble swallowing. I had very bad leg spasms off and onyesterday,morning,noon,night, and during the night. What is happening?

  137. I just had (today) my second shot in the series, for neck and upper back pain due to 3 collapsed disks in my neck. I chose to not have sedation, but only local anesthesia, and there was not really any pain, mostly just a pressure feeling and a ERY warm feeling as the fluid was injected. It was very tolerable, my anxiety was worse than the shot. I did feel very tired the rest of the day and some soreness for about 36 hours, ice works great. Mostly I my muscle cramps in the neck and back were worse for about 48 hours, but again ice works great. Starting about the 3rd day, the first shot seem to give about 50% relief for about 14-16 days, and allowed me more range of motion. It also seemed to lessen my lower back and hip pain. My second shot was scheduled for 3 weeks after the first. I hope this second shot lasts a little longer and I continue to get at least 50% relief. The biggest side affect for me was feeling hungry more often.

  138. I have had 6 shots over 2 year period. i still have EXTREME pain still.My periods were lasting longer with each shot. Some say that the shots do not cause that and yet it is not unheard of. I am as of my last shot in March 2nd, and its now April 18th, I still have my period. I all so have burning feeling(Sensation)starting around the shoulder going up the Neck to the Face. My arms want to lock in place with the pain going down to my fingers then they go numb and tingling. My Blood Pressure going up.My equilibrium is off, things are now blurry,and suffer from constipation. My Heart rate is also up.All this from shots if it had stopped the pain, But NO. If you think you can get a straight answer from a Doctor think again!

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