Spinal pain is a common condition that causes significant disability and costs a lot of money. That is why Spine Steroidsinjections are becoming popular in the market.
Spine steroid injections, also known as epidural steroid injections (ESIs), are a popular treatment option for many types of lower back and leg pain. They have been used for decades and are regarded as an essential component of the nonsurgical management of sciatica and lower back pain.
An epidural/spine steroid injection is so named because it involves injecting a local anesthetic and steroid medication directly into the epidural space that surrounds the spinal cord and nerve roots.
Two doctors about to inject a patient on the back
An epidural spine steroid injection (ESI) is a powerful anti-inflammatory medicine that is injected directly into the space outside of the sac of fluid that surrounds your spinal cord. This is known as the epidural space.
Spine Steroid Injections are not the same as epidural anesthesia, which is administered just before childbirth or certain types of surgery.
Spine Steroid Injections are administered in a hospital or outpatient clinic setting. The procedure is carried out as follows:
- You lie down on an x-ray table, face down, with a pillow under your stomach. If this position causes you pain, you should either sit up or lie on your side curled up.
- The area of your back where the needle will be inserted is cleaned by the healthcare provider. To numb the area, a medicine may be used. You may be given relaxation medication.
- A needle is inserted into your back by the doctor. To help guide the needle to the correct spot in your lower back, the doctor will most likely use an x-ray machine that produces real-time images.
- A steroid and numbing agent mixture are injected into the affected area. This medication relieves pain by reducing swelling and pressure on the nerves around your spine. The numbing medication can also be used to locate the painful nerve.
- During the injection, you may feel some pressure. The procedure is generally not painful. Because the injection must be precise, it is critical not to move during the procedure.
- You are observed for 15 to 20 minutes after the injection before being allowed to leave.
A person holding a needle and about to insert it on the back of another person
Any procedure involving a needle carries the risk of bleeding, infection, and nerve damage. When performed properly, the risk of any of these is extremely low and is usually outweighed by the procedure's potential benefit.
The following are some contraindications to performing epidural steroid injections:
- bleeding disorders or anticoagulation
- medication allergies (rare)
- systemic infection or localized infection overlying the area
Mild injection site pain, temporary worsening of usual pain, flushing, insomnia, or increased blood sugar are all common side effects. Typically, these are self-limiting and resolve within one to three days. A headache is a less common side effect.
Epidural spinal steroid injections deliver medication directly to a pinched nerve as it exits the spine through the epidural space. The epidural space is located between the spine's bones and discs, as well as the nerves and spinal cord. This is the area where disc tissue can herniate, causing pressure and inflammation around spinal nerves.
Epidural steroid injections work by delivering a strong anti-inflammatory directly to the site of nerve impingement in the spine. Injected medications can include steroids and saline, and their volume and concentration can vary depending on the patient.
An epidural injection may benefit patients suffering from lumbar disc herniation, degenerative disc disease, lumbar radiculopathy, sciatica, lumbar spinal stenosis, postherpetic neuralgia, and facet/synovial cysts. An epidural spine steroid injection may be used as a nonsurgical treatment or to aid in surgical planning.
To summarize, your spinal cord is a vital network of nerves that runs from your brain to your low back. Your spine functions as a highway, connecting the nerves located throughout your body to your brain, allowing your brain to communicate with the rest of your body. That is why it is critical to keep your spine healthy and pain-free and spine steroids are one of the popular recommendations.
For chronic pain management, healthcare providers may recommend epidural spine steroid injections. A steroid or corticosteroid medication is injected into the epidural space by the spinal cord in your low back by your provider.