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When to Consider an Epidural Injection for Back or Neck Pain

When to Consider an Epidural Injection for Back or Neck Pain

You’re unable to drive comfortably, as turning your head has become painful, or you can’t sit for long periods at your desk to get work done because of pain in your lower back. These scenarios are typical results of back and neck pain and send millions of people each year in the United States on the hunt for solutions.

The team here at Spinal Diagnostics prides itself on offering solutions that are results-oriented so that our patients can get back to their lives. As part of our extensive suite of options, we offer epidural injections, which can do wonders for relieving nagging back and neck pain.

Here’s a look at how epidural injections work and whether they can play a role in managing your back or neck pain.

Back or neck pain fueled by nerve compression

Your spine is largely responsible for supporting your musculoskeletal structure and providing movement, but it also houses your spinal cord, which is part of your central nervous system. 

As ground zero for your peripheral nervous system, your spinal cord acts as the primary starting point for most of the nerves in your body and contains sensitive nerve roots along its length.

While there are any number of conditions that can lead to back and/or neck pain, among the more common are those that compress these nerve roots, causing symptoms that are both local and those that radiate into your limbs. These conditions include:

In most cases of nerve-related spine pain, the nerve compression most often occurs in your neck or lower back as these areas work the hardest and enjoy the most movement.

Finding relief from nerve-related back or neck pain

If we find that nerve compression is responsible for your discomfort, we may recommend an epidural injection to help you find much-needed relief. This type of injection contains an anesthetic for pain and a steroid to bring inflammation down, which is our go-to combination for relieving musculoskeletal pain of all kinds.

When it comes to pain that originates in your spine, we’ve found that directing this injection into the epidural space that surrounds your spinal cord is the most effective approach.

Not only can an epidural injection provide you with relief from your back or neck pain, it can help alleviate radiating symptoms that travel into your arms or legs (a condition we call radiculopathy).

When we administer an epidural injection, we do so right here in our offices and we use advanced imaging to guide the needle into place. Once we’re finished, you’re free to return home, though we do ask that you take it easy for a day or two to allow the medications to take effect.

Once your epidural injection takes full effect, we highly recommend that you take advantage of this reprieve from your discomfort and take some steps for longer-term relief from back or neck pain, namely physical therapy.

If you’d like to learn more about epidural injections and whether you may be a candidate, contact one of our three locations in Tualatin or Newberg, Oregon, to set up an appointment. 

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