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ESI injections in neck

JoyJJoy Posts: 560
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:30 AM in Spinal Injections
My sister has just been told she will get an ESI injection next Friday and neither she nor I know anything about it. She has been told that she will be sedated but not put all the way under. Is this a painful procedure? She has a bulging C4 or C5 disc. Can anyone give me some info to give her?

I've been on SH for about a year...since my fusion surgery on L4 and L5, and this has been the one place I've found the info I needed.

I look forward to hearing from you guys on this issue. Thanks.


  • Hi Joy~I've had several ESI's in my neck-without sedation! It hurt every time-lol.With sedation she should be comfortable.

    She will lay on her belly with her neck extended.The Dr will cover the areas surounding the injection site with those surgical cloths,the ones that look like the dentist puts on us that looks like a bib.Even with sedation,she will first get an injection of a numbing agent in the area right before the epidural needle.My Dr explained each step before/as he was doing it.There will be a couple nurses in the room also,they help you feel comfortable and keep an eye on vitals and things.

    It takes a few minutes-the ESI is not injected as quickly as a typical shot.The Dr can see everything he is doing on a screen as well,and takes x-rays of the site as he goes.She won't be aware of the x-rays being taken unless the Dr or nurse tells her because she has to remain completely still.

    Afterwards-well I didn't get the sedation-but for me I was sore starting about 2-3 hours after,and I used ice for that the rest of the day.The next day I was pretty much back to normal with very little tenderness that faded throughout the day until it was gone.

    In my case the ESI's were unsuccessful,but many have had relief lasting from days,weeks and even months.I hope that your sisters ESI is effective and her pain is relieved.
  • With and without.
    With sedtion, I DO NOT REMEMBER A THING!
    I got the IV put in and after getting into position, nothing else. I remember them saying it was all over and now roll over onto the gurney.

    Without sedation, I remember each of the four initial injections, the four contrast injections and the four
    coritsone injections. You can feel it but I won't get all up tight about it, it's over in about ten minutes.

  • I am sure my sister will appreciate the Good news that she won't feel a thing with the sedation! She is also suffering from carpal tunnel in both wrists and carpal tunnel (another name I can't remember) in her elbow. Then the neck pain. She is such a tiny person...weighs about 101 soaking wet! It has been a nightmare for her to find the right doctor to dx the true problems. Her pain doc is the one that will do the injections. Keep her in your prayers!
  • I wonder why mine hurt so much.I've heard others talk about the pressure feeling,and whenever I had epidurals in my lower spine for my C-sections they didn't hurt--just pressure..but these in my neck,they were pretty painful.The one in my hip was incredibly painful,but then my hip was already very painful itself-until right after the injection.That one really worked wonders.I realise the epidurals for the C-sections are different,but still the same general procedure.Maybe it was the medication?

    Joy-How is your sister-did the ESI help her at all??
  • I think it all depends on the luck of the draw. I have had two cervical, the first one was slightly painfull and a pressure sensation.

    The second one seemed like the PM was in a hurry, even though he stopped and numbed me more it still hurt! It was really creepy too as when he injected the steroids I had a sharp stabbing pain flash the whole way down to the tip of me left hand. That really freaked me out as it is my right shoulder that is painful!

    I think the pain comes from added pressure on the nerves when they add the fluid from the injection.

    Neither of my ESIs helped. It is worth a try though as you will never know till you try.
  • I was looking for info on ESI and came upon this website. It looks like something that can help my decision making process.
    About six weeks ago I began experiencing tingling and numbness in my left arm whenever I sat down. It got so bad I was unable to sit at the computer at all and was only comfortable on the sofa reclining to the left.
    I went to my DO for an adjustment and experienced some relief but went back a week later for a follow-up. With her approval I began chiropractic treatments, after 5-6 treatments I was not improving much and began to experience some pain at night, it felt like I had a blood pressure wrap on way too tight and like someone was pressing a knuckle into my forearm. This was waking me up several times a night.
    The chiropractor was close by but not in our insurance loop so I changed chiropractors. This time I began to experience some relief! She had a different approach, listened to my symptoms and what my Dr had said and tailored my treatment to fit! The other place was more like assembly line treatment!
    I now have very little tingling or pain and seem to be slowly improving but both Doctors wanted me to get an MRI.
    It shows 'mild degenerative disc disease,posterior disc bulge and osteophtye formation resulting in mild flattening of the ventral thecal sac and ventrolateral exiting neuroforaminal stenosis'
    My DO has suggested getting an ESI but I don't know if my symptoms really make it necessary especially since the chiropractic sessions are helping.
    The other factor is that I work part time doing clerical work that seems to be aggravating my condition. I'm thinking it might make more sense to find a different job and continue the current therapy.
    I'm not really looking for someone to tell me what to do, just some opinions from people who have experienced this at other levels.
    Sorry this is so long! Thanks for your input!!
  • acasselman, you will get answers if you start your own thread, as this one is very old. Welcome to spine-health!

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