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Severe pain following Specific Nerve Root Block

Camper29CCamper29 Posts: 9
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:44 AM in Spinal Injections
Just had my 4th SNRI as a treatment for right leg sciatica (L3-4 herniation) last Thursday and am in excruciating pain today and can hardly move. No headache or fever, just pain. Even my lazy boy chair doesn't offer relief.....
Anyone else have this result? I am going to see my family doctor this afternoon but can't get in to see my specialist until next week.


  • How are you...I have to get one in 2 weeks on my C-5 nerve?
  • I recently had my first set of nerve block injections and it was not fun. The first injection on the left side of my lower lumbar spine literally made me jump before I could even register the pain. The second shot I hardly even felt, so I have a feeling something went wrong with that first injection.
    Since then, (it's been 13 days) I have been in constant pain at the injection site for 10 out of the 13 days. It's a very sharp stabbing pain right where the injection was, that then spreads out and I get the stabbing sensation every 5-10 seconds. When I'm walking, it's considerably worse, every time my left foot hits the ground it's a very intense stabbing pain by the injection site. I don't know if this is a normal reaction, as it's my first time doing these, and my dr is now on vacation. The receptionist told me to ice it and that pain is normal. This doesn't feel normal. I also have generalized low back pain almost constantly.
    Hopefully somebody who has experience with these injections can chime in. Is your pain at the injection site or more generalized?
    I really hope it gets better for you...I hope we didn't make a bad decision concerning the injections. I feel like I've put myself in more pain than ever and am becoming really depressed about it.

    Best of luck to you, hopefully we can get some helpful replies.
  • Hi, I just wanted to check up & see how you are doing. I am currently having the same problems. I had my nerve block on Monday & I can hardly walk. The afternoon after I had the procedure I took a very small walk so that the soreness would not take over. The next afternoon I was in severe pain & still am. I have read older posts about soreness & after pain but WOW, its bad. The absolute worst pain yet. My pain has been a 20 on the 1-10 scale since. It feels like I have been stabbed & they left the knife in. If yours has finally let up, how long did it take?? I know this is an older post but I thought it wouldn't hurt to ask...no pun intended.
    Thanks. Ouchithurts

    Camper29 said:
    Just had my 4th SNRI as a treatment for right leg sciatica (L3-4 herniation) last Thursday and am in excruciating pain today and can hardly move. No headache or fever, just pain. Even my lazy boy chair doesn't offer relief.....
    Anyone else have this result? I am going to see my family doctor this afternoon but can't get in to see my specialist until next week.
  • I know your comment was addressed to Camper, but being that I also had intense pain after my first injection (very similar stabbing feeling as you described), I thought I'd give my two cents.

    After the second set of injections, the pain was the same, if not more intense. They actually had to up me to Roxicodone 15 mgs 4 times a day from percocet 5mgs 3 times a day because I was just not functioning.

    The Roxicodone definitely helped a lot more than the Percocet and I also experienced less side effects with it. Then came time for the "miraculous" third set of injections. I say miraculous, because it seems everybody says you won't feel relief til after your third. Well, I hate to say it but they were right. Since my 3rd set, I've been in little to no pain at all, which is really something amazing, considering the level of pain I was in before starting the injections and the even more intense pain after starting.

    In my opinion, if you trust your doctor knows what he is doing, and he's taking the xrays before hand, etc. I would wait it out, the two months of intense pain was definitely worth not feeling any at all now, for me at least. I was very scared about getting the 2nd set, and even more worried about the 3rd since the pain was intensifying so I know how confused you must feel right now about what decisions to make. From my experience, it was worth it to go for all 3.

    I hope this helps you a little, and I truly hope your pain gets better. Living with constant pain is something that effects all aspects of your life. i went from being severely depressed to super happy now that I'm pain free. I don't even need to use opiates anymore....what a relief! Good luck to you. =]
  • Thank you so much for your reply. I now feel better about what I'm feeling. I did end up calling the doc & letting him know what's going on. He told me to up my morphine for 3 days. I am feeling somewhat better today, although still really sore. Someone finally took the knife out lol.
    So far I am only scheduled to one more nerve block and then a discogram. He didn't mention anything about a 3rd nerve block. I will probably mention it at my next appt. I remember he was telling me he was using these as a diagnositic tool but I could also get some temporary relief for a day or two. Maybe I can follow your lead and be pain free also. Again, thank you very much for settling my mind.
  • No problem! Definitely talk to your doctor about it, and hey, maybe you'll get my kind of relief just with one set if the "knife" is already gone! Let me know how it turns out and feel free to contact me if you have any more questions.
  • I finally left the house. Only for an hour. My husband took me out for a ride to get me out of the house yesterday. I thought I felt up to it. We actually went to Burger King. (don't ask me why but I wanted it for a change, I NEVER eat the stuff) Anyway, we ate inside and I had a little pain walking and sitting but we immediately went home. About an hour later I began having excrutiating pain in my legs and groin. I tried ice and then heat. Nothing was working. I just layed in bed all night trying to be still and not move. I finally fell asleep after about 3 hours. Today the pain is back, not as bad as last night but it's there. I don't know if it's normal but I do know from my nerve test that I have problems with my right leg (L5) and left leg (S1). What's strange is the dermetones switch legs time to time. Does anyone else have this experience? Any ideas on what I should do? My tens unit only aggrivates it right now and meds don't seem to be cutting it. Thank you
  • Just to be sure, and to let him know what's going on. I have to be honest, I was in excruciating pain daily after my injections and I mean like really intense pain, more intense than ever. I was also getting nerve pain more often (down arms and legs). And I hate to tell you this, but today I'm in pretty intense pain again =[ The dermatomes are very tricky because each and every nerve body (you have a crap load of them around your spine) travels to different areas. So if any nerve cell is irritated and sending pain signals along it's pathway or "dermatome" you can definitely be experiencing pain in new places. The pelvis is concerning; only because that may mean your Large Intestine and/or bladder may be involved, please keep track of any changes in your urination/defecation patterns and make sure to tell the doc of any changes.

    So sorry you're going through this, I can only say I know what it's like and I hope for the both of us it gets better!
  • Still in severe pain. I have one more block on Aug 8 so I shall see what is going to happen with that one. I am trying to convience myself that since I haven't had my S1 done yet that once that's complete the pain will subside, although truthfully I doubt it. I'm really getting more and more angry that nothing is working and the pain is just increasing. The mornings & nights are getting worse every day. Ice, heat, stim., meds......I really don't know how everyone here can keep going. I really admire that anyone can keep themselves together with the problems I see that some have here. I am amazed!
  • So sorry you're still in so much pain, I'd like to know what happened if you don't mind, concerning your back? Car accident? Herniations?
    I had 2 cars rear end me in the span of 1.5 years, first one wasn't too bad, the second one was going about 40mph and that's the one that did me in. After the second accident I had 4 herniations in my c spine and 5 in my L spine. I also have multiple annular tears, cord compression and nerve compressions. The worst is at L5, my disc ruptured, you can clearly see in Xrays that there's just no nucleus pulposos left in that disc, it's almost completely flat with bone touching bone. I think that's where most of my pain originates from.

    Update for me is, since the last (3rd injection) I've had maybe 3 days of pain...the rest of the days I'm in very little to no pain. I went through all these injections while simultaneously taking a summer class and it definitely affected my grades...we're not all as strong as you think we are! I've had my fair share of anger, depression, bouts of crying...wondering what will happen in the years to come being that I'm fairly young and already have so many problems (27, 24 when this started)....at times, when I was in REALLY intense pain, I almost felt it wasn't worth going on with my life...with school...with anything. Coming here and getting info and support from people who are going through the same thing is what got me through it all, that and my family, and my therapist!
    Have you seen a therapist since your injuries? I urge you to think about it...sometimes it's nice to be able to talk to an outsider and just let it all go and pour it out, my therapist has helped me tremendously with the anger and depression. I remember watching "You Don't Know Jack", a movie about Jack Kevorkian and really feeling like, why should I have to live with this pain??? I should be able to determine if my quality of life is not worth being around anymore. If it wasn't for my therapist, who knows what would have happened. Yeah, I'm young, I have a very demanding career ahead of me, and I've got a bunch of problems with my spine, but you know what? I'm going to try and help as many people as I can no matter what I'm going through when I'm a Registered Nurse. Giving back to the community also makes me feel more happy about my life.
    I just want you to know that...it doesn't matter what it is that's wrong with your back, one herniation, 10, 15!!!....pain is pain, and I totally feel for you. I want you to work through this, do all you know how to get better, as much as you can. Don't let the pain win! Please! You are worth it and deserve a wonderful life! I'm so happy I went forward with all 3 sets of injections and things are looking up now, I can exercise again, I can play with my nephew, I can sit without wanting to stick a knife in my back and just cut my spine out. There may be a happy ending for you, just keep your head up. I'm pulling for you <3
  • I'm sorry it has taken me so long to reply & thanks for talking to me. I actually am not sure exactly what caused the pain in my back but I believe it happened when I was camping & picked up a cooler.
    My pain since my last injection still has not gone away, but has gotten somewhat better. I was scheduled today for another nerve block in my S1 but when I told him about the first one he did, he immediately sent me packing. No, he didn't drop me, just told me he wasn't doing another one. I have a discogram scheduled for next week. He wants to wait until after so he can see what's going on. He said he was very concerned & the nerve block on L5 a few weeks ago should not have made me in that much pain. I have had facet joint injections, epidurals, RF, & trigger point injections. Needless to say, I am the human pin cushion!! I just hope he can determine the complete diagnosis soon & I can get on with my life & go back to work. Oh I forgot, I also believe my radiofrequency is wearing off too. I have learned to appreciate those that have to go through this. I hope you are doing better. I like to hear good news that someone is benefiting from injection therapy. Sadly, I am not one of them.
  • It's been touch and go with me lately unfortunately. I thought the 3rd set of injections had done wonders, but it seems the more time passes the more often I'm in pain. I'm really hoping my insurance will okay some physical therapy because I found one who is supposedly very good and hopefully can help teach me some ways to relieve the pain when I'm at home.

    I'm sorry but I was on my way out the door when I got this, I really wish the best for you. Hopefully your doctor will figure out the problem and come up with a better treatment plan. At this time I'm starting to consider surgery =( I guess we'll see. Talk to you soon!
  • Right leg
    Last Tuesday, I had an injection in the L5 root nerve. I didn't take any local or anything the procedure went good, a little tense during the injection lots of burning in my leg when he was injecting the steroid meds, took me 2 hours before I could walk a little. My problem my leg hurts more now than ever and hip area, before it was isolated in one area lower front calf area, now its all the lower leg and fells like it never stops jumping inside my leg and my hip and lower right cheek "butt" area hurts like the dickens scale of 1 - 10 = 6 to 8 day and night. Its been 5 days and no relieve yet should I call my doctor or just bare with it for more time.
  • LizLiz Posts: 7,832
    edited 07/27/2014 - 7:59 AM
  • Had mine done yesterday at left c6 and c8. No pain at the injection site, but it seems like my pain has started to spread out to both arms a bit more. My doctor wants me to try some physical therapy next week too. Seems like just a formality before the surgery. Hope it all gets scheduled soon, before my insurance lapses.
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