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Epidural Lysis

I just saw my pain management doc today, and he is suggesting an epidural lysis, as he believes that I have nerve entrapment in epidural scar tissue. Has anyone had this done, and if so, did you find it helpful?

I had a one-level ACDF six weeks ago, which has resolved the numbness/tingling issues I was having, but my main struggle for the past 15 years has been my lower lumbar. I had a laminectomy (L4-L5) done in 2010, which helped for a couple of years, but began having worsening pain last year. So far this year I've had numerous ESI's, medial nerve block, and ablation on both lower lumbar sides. The ablation lasted about four months. I saw my neurosurgeon a couple of weeks ago to follow up on my ACDF, and when I mentioned that my on-going back issues were not getting better - despite the treatments my pain doc had tried - he looked at my MRI from June and said my S1 was mangled, and we needed to consider a L5-S1 fusion after my cervical fusion had some more time to heal. I asked my pain doc his thoughts on that today, and he said we could try the epidural lysis.

Any insight anyone can give into this procedure would be most helpful, and very appreciated!



  • is an attempt to break up or loosen scar tissue. For some patients it can be very effective, others not so much. It is worth giving it a try and if it helps, then that is a great thing......if not, you gave the least invasive method a try, and it might be worthwhile looking into more options. Just remember that scar tissue is difficult to remove, with surgery, there will always be more as with any trauma to the tissue.
  • I have had a lysis of adhesions injection and it did help. However, I had a major case of aches and stiffness for a few days after each time. I felt like I was kicked in the back by a horse. I may have been an exception, but don't be surprised if you are sore afterwards.
    DDD & spinal stenosis L4-S1 since 2001
    30+ injections, PT, massage therapy, accupuncture, TENS unit, meds, etc but no surgical intervention
    I am not a surgical candidate
  • chrelseycchrelsey Posts: 90
    edited 10/11/2013 - 1:16 PM

    You were right about being sore afterwards! I had this done on Wednesday, and my pain management doc doesn't really believe in any type of conscious sedation, so I had it done with just local anesthetic. Never again. I think it was more painful than the radio frequency ablation - which was also with only local anesthetic.

    I am having terrible pain at the injection site - right at the tip of the tailbone - which makes it difficult to sit. I am also having more back pain that I was prior to the procedure. I called their office today just to ask if this was normal, and they said to call back on Monday if it hasn't gotten any better.

    My neurosurgeon is going to decide next month on a lumbar fusion, and I want to know that I've done everything possible before going that route, and I think this is the last thing for us to try. Crossing my fingers that the procedure pain will be better tomorrow, and that I'll have some longer-term benefits from it as well!

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