Herniated disks, “Slipped” vertebrae, Joint cysts, Bone spurs, Thickening ligaments in the spine because of spinal arthritis can all be treated by administering Epidural Corticosteroid Injections.
This is one of the most common treatments for one-time or recurring pain. An epidural corticosteroid is injected directly into the fat-filled area which protects the spinal cord and surrounding nerves. Normally the conditions that can be aided through epidural steroids cause pain in arms and legs that is otherwise difficult to treat through traditional means like topical or systemic medications.
Physicians and patients alike tend to look toward epidural steroid injection because it is an outpatient procedure with a quick turn around time. According to Hopkins Medicine,
“An epidural steroid injection is a simple procedure:
- Your healthcare provider will use an X-ray machine showing moving images on a screen to guide the needle as he or she makes the injection and ensures that the needle is in the correct location.
- Contrast dye is injected at the site to make sure that the medicine will be sent to the exact place it needs to go.
- The healthcare provider will inject the steroid medicine itself, often along with a local anesthetic to help with pain relief.”
Steroids are well known to reduce nerve pain and inflammation, they accomplish this by suppressing the chemical production of cells caused by multiple inflammatory genes. The National Institute of Health describes the process,
“Chronic inflammation is characterized by the increased expression of multiple inflammatory genes that are regulated by proinflammatory transcription factors, such as nuclear factor-kappaB and activator protein-1, that bind to and activate coactivator molecules, which then acetylate core histones to switch on gene transcription. Corticosteroids suppress the multiple inflammatory genes that are activated in chronic inflammatory diseases”
Knocking down the inflammatory response to provide pain relief isn’t permanent and can last anywhere from a week to up to a year. If the injection is effective, usually up to three injections can be given per year. This can be extremely helpful in limiting oral medication to ease side effects on the liver or kidneys from long-term use, postponing surgical procedures until recuperation arrangements can be made of allowing a patient to continue needed physical therapy.
As the premier pain management specialists in Arizona, Summa Pain Care,
- Performs specialized tests for diagnosing your chronic pain conditions.
- Appropriately prescribes and/or manages medications to any unique conditions at varying levels of severity. Also help reduce or eliminate your prescription pain medications.
Find your nearest location in Peoria, Phoenix or North Scottsdale today and don’t put this off any longer. Unaddressed back and neck pain generally doesn’t improve. Call our Phoenix location at 623.580.4357 , you can reach Peoria at 623.776.8686 or contact us in North Scottsdale at 480.786.1771.