Epidural injections can be performed for neck pain, mid back pain, and low back pain. They can also be used to treat radiating pain down the arms or lower extremities (sciatica). The diagnosis of disc pain requires a good history and physical examination as well as imaging studies such as MRI and x-ray.
Occasionally, electrodiagnostic studies such as EMG can also be performed to assist with diagnosis. All of these studies combined with a careful evaluation of the patient, one-on-one with a skilled clinician can make the diagnosis of pain caused by a disc. Epidural injections have been performed safely and effectively for at least the last 40 years. In this day and age, epidural injections are generally performed using the guidance of an x-ray machine, or fluoroscope, to help assure safety and accuracy of the procedure.
While many pain management specialists recommend a “series of 3 epidural injections,” at Comprehensive Pain Management, each procedure is carefully considered and the patient’s response is assessed before we consider additional procedures. In this way, our practice is conservative yet responsive to the patient’s needs. Unnecessary injections are avoided, thereby decreasing the risk and unnecessary cost to the patient. Epidural injections are performed under local anesthesia, with or without conscious sedation, depending on the needs of the patient. The procedure is generally associated with very little discomfort to the patient, particularly when care is taken to assure good local anesthesia and comfort for the patient. Safety, effectiveness, and comfort of the patient are our highest priorities.