Epidural injections work by soothing inflamed nerve roots.
The epidural sac is filled with a mix of medicine that flush out proteins that cause the nerve roots to swell. This treatment is considered minimally invasive and has a great chance of relieving back pain.
How It Works
Epidural Injections in Los Angeles contain mixes of corticosteroid and numbing agents that are injected into epidural sacs that are found in the back. When the mix of corticosteroid is injected into the epidural sac, the nerve roots are literally covered with the medication. Nerve roots react to being in contact with the injection by decreasing in inflammation and swelling. The relief caused by the injection can last from a couple of days to many years.
While the epidural injection does not solve the problem as to why the nerve root first became inflamed and caused pain, it does allow the pain to be mitigated to begin a physical therapy program. Epidural injections can also be used to pinpoint where back pain is coming from. Surgery may be required after an epidural injection.
Who Is a Candidate?
Anyone who suffers from back pain can be a potential candidate. Epidural Injections in Los Angeles can alleviate pain that comes from spinal stenosis, spondylolisthesis, herniated discs or sciatica. There may be complications for people who have certain conditions. Blood sugar levels can become elevated after an epidural injection, so this can be problematic for anyone with diabetes. Additionally, blood thinning medication should be stopped for a few days prior to the injection. The cessation of blood thinning medication may cause complications for anyone experiencing a heart condition. X-rays that are used during epidural injections could be cause problems for pregnant women as they may cause harm to a fetus.
What to Expect
Epidural Injections in Los Angeles should take 15 to 45 minutes. A patient should firstly arrange for someone to drive them home as weakness after the injection is reported. A patient will usually be told not to consume food prior to the injection. A patient will arrive at the clinic and be given a gown to wear. They will lie down on an x-ray table. After making sure that everything is going according to the proper protocol, the doctor will give a numbing agent to the patient in the area that the epidural injection will be administered.
The doctor will insert a hollow needle into the epidural sac. They will commonly be assisted with a fluoroscope and inject the patient with contrast dye to ensure that the needle is in the correct position. If the needle is in the right spot, the doctor will give the patient the medicine consisting of a corticosteroid solution. The patient will then be monitored to see if any negative side effects occurred. Once the patient is deemed to be in an acceptable condition, they can leave and begin doing normal activities in 24 hours. Epidural Injections in Los Angeles will begin to work in a one to three days, and the patient should remain in communication with their doctor to let them know how effective the injection was in relieving their pain. It may be administered again to produce a stronger effect, or another treatment option may begin.
Epidural injections are commonly used to begin treating back pain. They are minimally invasive and often do not have negative side effects. Since pain relief varies between patients, they may or may not be the final solution to a person’s back pain. Dialogue with a doctor about the expectations of the injection should be had to understand what other treatment options may exist.