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Epidural Anesthetic Block And Steroid Injection

WHAT IS IT?
A block that is performed under fluoroscopy to confirm a specific diagnosis and/or decrease pain and inflammation.

PROCEDURE SUMMARY
A local skin anesthetic is given. A special needle is then inserted into the epidural space of the Cervical, Thoracic, lumbar or caudal spine. Fluoroscopy is used to guide the needle and prevent complications from the needle. Contrast medium is injected into the space to confirm proper placement and outline the effect of the herniation on the spine and nerve roots, films are taken for review with the patient. An anesthetic and then a steroid(usually a long acting- slow release type of cortisone) are injected into the epidural space.

EXPECTED RESULTS
Relief of pain if the medication reaches the inflamed area or source of pain.

EXPECTED PROCEDURE TIME
Fifteen minutes plus approximately fifteen to forty-five minutes recovery time depending or not as to whether sedation is given.

GLOSSARY

  • EPIDURAL – Space outside the dura or covering of the spinal cord and inside the spinal canal. This space runs the length of the spine.
  • DURA – Hard covering of the spinal cord which prevents fluid from leaking out and protects the spinal cord and nerve roots.

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