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Why Do I Need To Get An Epidural Steroid Injection?

Epidural Steroid Injections help with pain stemming from trauma like a car collision or slip and fall accident. When it comes to personal injury cases, there are a lot of spinal injuries reported by patients to their doctors. After conservative treatment fails, the doctors and orthopedic specialists often rely on Epidural Steroid Injections to help with pain. The shots are usually offered as a solution to pain stemming from a car wreck or any other injury that results in pain in your spine. There are not many treatments for spinal cord injuries and if you are experiencing pain and radicular symptoms (i.e. tingling, numbness, sharp pain down your extremities). Luckily with advances in medicine, orthopedic specialists can relieve pain with a fairly successful, albeit invasive, procedure called Epidural Steroid Injections. 

According to the Mayfield Clinic and other accredited sources, an Epidural Steroid Injection (ESI) is an [invasive] procedure that can help relieve neck, arm, back, and leg pain caused by inflamed spinal nerves. ESIs may be performed to relieve pain caused by spinal stenosis, spondylolysis, or disc herniation. 

The clinic describes how the medicine contained within the Epidural Steroid Injections work: 

Medicines are delivered to the spinal nerve through the epidural space, the area between the protective covering of the spinal nerves and bony vertebrae. Pain relief may last for several days or even years. The goal is to reduce pain so that you may resume normal activities and a physical therapy program.1 

A steroid injection includes both a corticosteroid (e.g., triamcinolone, methyl-prednisolone, dexamethasone) and an anesthetic numbing agent (e.g., lidocaine or bupivacaine). The drugs are delivered into the epidural space of the spine, which is the area between the protective covering (dura) of the spinal cord and nerves and the bony vertebrae.2”  

Clients who have been injured in a severe car crash are often candidates for Epidural Steroid Injection procedures due to the severity of the impact or damage to the spine. As a result of a severe impact, a person can develop a herniated disc. This is when “the gel-like material within the disc can bulge or rupture through a weak area in the surrounding wall (annulus). Irritation, pain, and swelling occur when this material squeezes out and comes in contact with a spinal nerve.3 If this pain is not fully relieved by the Epidural Steroid Injections, then the patient may be deemed a surgical candidate if the pain is too severe to manage.