When inflamed spinal nerves cause pain, an epidural steroid injection gives you the relief you need to get back to an active life. At Pain Care Boise in downtown Boise, Idaho, board-certified pain specialists William Binegar, MD, and Christopher Vaughan, MD, have years of experience giving patients safe, effective epidural steroid injections. To learn if you’re a candidate for epidural steroid injections, schedule an appointment today using the online booking feature or calling the office.
An epidural steroid injection relieves the pain caused by inflamed spinal nerves. The injection contains steroids and a local anesthetic.
Your provider injects the medications into the epidural space, the area that surrounds and protects the spinal cord. When the medications enter the epidural space, they flow freely around several nerve roots, reaching several segments of the spine.
The anesthetic quickly but temporarily relieves your pain. The steroids take a little longer to reduce the inflammation. Once the steroids take effect, most people find that they get longer-lasting relief. If your first injection is effective, you can get a series of injections.
The team at Pain Care Boise recommends epidural steroid injections for patients who have neck, back, leg, or arm pain caused by nerve inflammation. The inflammation is often brought on by spine conditions like:
In some cases, a neck or back injury causes nerve inflammation that can be effectively treated with an epidural steroid injection.
When inserting the needle, your provider uses one of three approaches:
The interlaminar technique refers to inserting the needle between two vertebrae, approaching the epidural space from the back side of your spine.
When using a transforaminal approach, your provider inserts the needle through the bony opening on the side of the vertebrae where nerve roots travel out of the spinal canal.
The bottom of your spine connects with a triangular-shaped bone called the sacrum. Below the sacrum, a few vertebrae form the tailbone (coccyx).
When using a caudal approach, your provider inserts the needle between the tailbone and sacrum. This route allows the needle to reach the nerve roots in the sacral epidural space.
Your provider uses fluoroscopy, a type of X-ray that provides images in real time, to guide the epidural steroid injection. Fluoroscopic imaging allows your provider to see your spine and precisely insert the needle.
After you receive a topical anesthetic, your Pain Care Boise provider guides a needle into the epidural space. They first inject a dye and watch as it flows through the epidural space.
The path of the dye verifies that the medication will reach the inflamed nerves. Your provider then injects the medication and removes the needle.
You should start to feel some pain relief in a few days, but it takes 7-10 days for the steroids to take full effect.
To learn more about the benefits of epidural steroid injections, book an appointment online today or call Pain Care Boise.