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Pain DURING injection

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,671
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:35 AM in Spinal Injections
Had my first injection today. Pain clinic Doc said my pain SEEMS to stem from super tight muscles on the side of my spine and my right hip is higher. His plan was to treat assuming my pain is muscle related and if it didn't work to treat for the disc.

Fast forward to today, had the steroid injection. I told him meds don't hit me the way they do normal people, I have had two experiences of anesthesia NOT working. He assured me I would have enough Versaid (sp?) and Fentanol (sp?). Surprise surprise I was in horrible pain and I remember everything :-(

So my question is this - the pain I had DURING the injection was in the back of my leg, not my back. It burned, was hot and HURT like the dickens. Is this normal and does it help me pinpoint what is causing my pain? Right now my pain is worse than it has been in a long time and the only meds I have are T4 which barely do anything :-(


  • Yes and yes. It is very normal. Sounds like the doctor hit the right spot if your problems are at L5-S1. It sounds like the sensation you felt ran right along the S1 nerve. Did it go into your foot, too? The nerve root is located in your lower back near the L5 and S1 vertebrae, but the pain radiates in a predictable pattern out from there.

    I had an S1 nerve block on Friday and I felt just what you describe. I first felt the numbing medication run the length of my leg...and then I felt the same thing when he injected the steroid. I don't get the burning, but more of a feeling of extreme pressure.

    Despite what the doctor told you, if you can possibly arrange it, stay off your feet for at least the next 48-72 hours. You will get the most "bang for the buck" by resting. It keeps the medication from dissipating and gives it the best chance of working.

    Use ice or a cold pack for pain, twenty minutes on, twenty minutes off for the first 24 hours. After that, you can use heat or ice, whichever feels better. Sometimes the soreness will last for several days, or only a couple hours. It's different for me almost every time.
  • Where is your pain normally? More in the back or in your leg/legs? How long have you had it?
  • Thanks for the replies! Normally my lower back is what hurts, mostly on my left side. Sitting hurts unless I crouch forward, getting up from chairs is the worst!! Standing or walking for long periods hurts too. Bending forward feels better than backward. I get spasms and my hips and legs will SOMETIMES hurt but it's mostly in my pain. The pain started about 4 years ago, with episodes of relief for a few years - no relief now in 1 1/2 years :-(
  • I hope the epis work for you. It took the 2nd and 5th one for my leg to feel better about 2 weeks after. I also got a 2nd opinion Pain Management Dr. after a few months and had further help with facet joint injections. Wishing you less pain days ahead. Take care. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • Mine hurt too! I just had mine done on Tuesday. My pain was in my right leg, down to my foot. It only lasted 30 seconds or so, but never the less it was there. My back felt "full" until this morning. Can't really tell if mine has worked yet.

  • Well, your symptoms sound like typical stenosis! The disc bulge may or may not be contributing to the stenosis. The steroid will help with the inflammation and may provide a bit more room for the nerve to pass freely.

    I hope that is the case for you.

    I am going to a new doctor for pain management. He is Vietnamese (which may or may not have anything to do with it!!) and he does not believe in sedation for treatments. It is not pleasant, but I must say this is the first time in three years that I have had a positive result.

    I had a transforaminal injection at L5-S1 this morning. It took forever to get the needle placed exactly where he wanted it. And then he said he was giving me lots of medication...it took a long time to run in. It was the most unpleasant experience of all my various onerve blocks, ESIs, etc. but, I must say, from the moment I finished, I have not had any pain from the procedure or from the nerve.

    But enough about me! Regarding your muscle tightness, etc. I just wanted to mention that when you have pain from stenosis, etc. you hold your body in such a way as to protect the area that causes you pain. This results in muscle imbalances. The soft tissue and muscles work hard to "guard" the damaged area. This usually results in one side being tighter than the other. It can result in a torque to the back, unbalanced pelvis, etc. that can result in one leg appearing to be longer than the other, one hip higher than the other, etc.

    Spinal surgeons are not noted for having much interest in anything other than surgical procedures. They do not spend much time with hands on examinations, etc. If you could find someone who specializes in orthopedic body work, you might be able to get some of your problems resolved...if the problem is not stemming from the disc. Some massage therapists or physical therapists have this type of specialization.

    If your pain is mostly in your back, it can be easier to resolve with conservative treatments. You might want to check in the library or a bookstore for books by Robin McKenzie. His exercises have helped many people.
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