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ESI Scheduled. A few questions...

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,671
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:29 AM in Spinal Injections
Hi all,
My insurance finally approved a series of 2 ESIs and they are scheduled in a few weeks. Both are to be done a week apart. This is new for me, but I have been suffering from low back pain and shooting pain going down to my big toe for 2 years. The nurse told me they give a Versed injection IM and that's it. No IV sedation. What am I in for? Will the Versed help? Why are these done 1 week apart? It seems to me the Dr. would want a longer space to see what effect the 1st injection had. Thanks in advance.



  • Thanks for the quick reply, kattoo13. 2 were scheduled because that's all the ins company approved. Not sure why, but I guess that's their policy. I hope it works. I DO NOT want to have surgery.
  • My first ESI was the only thing that has ever worked for me. Lasted 8 months. I got versed but it was IV. I didn't realize they could give it IM. The pain is minimal during the injections. Once the novocaine wears off you'll be sore for a few days until the steroid starts working its magic.
  • So far all I have done is PT and pain meds. Yes, this is my 1st ESI. Jay, I hope mine works as well. Thanks.
  • Had it done this morning. So far so good. It went a lot better than I expected. Relatively no pain. Mostly pressure. The whole thing lasted about 10 minutes. I sure hope it helps. Doc said it will take a while before it really kicks in.
  • Nothing but a dull headache so far. It gets better when I lay down. This is by no means one of those "worst headache I have ever had in my life" things. It's just a dull headache that increases with intensity the longer I sit/stand. No relief from the back and leg pain yet. I think I need to give it time to work. From what I've read, ESI's are not a "ready fix", but rather take days or weeks to work. Is that a correct assumption?
  • I was sore for about 4 days.(bruised/punched feeling) Around the 6th day I started to feel a bit of relief in my thoracic but not the main issue my lumbar.
    I had concious IV sedation and don't remember a thing.
    My PM at the time said if the first one did not work he would not think about doing a second.
    He also would of scheduled them 2 weeks apart..
    I would give it a few more days to see if there is any progress!!

    Good luck!!
  • The headache is gone. It never got beyond a dull headache, but it lasted 4 days. No relief from the constant low back pain. I had a break through pain episode on Friday that finally put me back in bed on Sat. It seems to stabilize when I lay down for a while, but the minute I get up and move around everything starts to tighten up and the pain is intense. It radiates down my leg. I have another injection scheduled this coming week. Not sure if I am expecting too much from the 1st injection or if I just haven't given it enough time. Perhaps this is why these injections are given in a series of 2 or 3.
    How much time should I give for the ESI's to work their magic? If the injections don't work, what's the next step?
  • It looks like I am in the same shoes as janetatum. I'm now 2 weeks post 2nd ESI. The 2nd injection seemed to help with the level 9 breakthrough pain I was experiencing after the 1st injection, but no relief from the constant low back pain. In fact, it is a bit worse than before. The pain in my hip is much worse and I am now experiencing 2 new issues: I get up to pee 2 to 3 times during the night. Normally, even when awakened due to pain, I never need to get up. I'm also having this weird tingling in the bottom of my foot. I've called the doctor, but the nurse just tells me this may be a temporary side effect.
    I'm not sure where this will lead. Anyone had similar issues? What's next? What happens if this doesn't clear up? At what point do I look into a pain pump, SCS, or surgery? The doctor is not the friendliest guy I have come across nor does he really explain what's going on.
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