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Anyone had these long term side-effects?

CdbfrnCCdbfrn Posts: 1
edited 12/16/2015 - 11:26 PM in Spinal Injections
This is my first post, so forgive me if this has already been asked. On a quick search, I did not see this info discussed.

I had a major bulging disc l5-s1 after a car accident a few years ago. This year I completed surgery after giving birth to my child and there are no words for how much it has helped me! Best decision I ever made! However, the surgery came after completing an exhaustive regimen of every non-surgical method of tx. This included epidural steroid injections.

My question is this: after I began the epidural treatments, I began having chest and arm flushing; like really, really bad arm flushing. My upper arms look horribly red, people are constantly asking if I have been badly sunburnt. I have seen my GP, OP, and dermatologist about it, and they are all stumped. But it all started directly after my epidurals. And I have had chronic yeast infections since I had them as well. Is this all due to high blood sugar after the steroids? I just want to know that this will all pass!

Sorry if this is a stupid question. Just seems like both symptoms came out of nowhere, and all other lab work is normal, besides slightly elevated thyroid and blood sugar. I am a very fit young adult woman so this all seems very bizarre.


  • LizLiz Posts: 7,832
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    Liz -Spine-health Moderator

    Liz, Spine-health Moderator

    Spinal stenosis since 1995
    Lumber decompression surgery S1 L5-L3[1996]
    Cervical stenosis, so far avoided surgery
  • So glad to hear your surgery was a success!
    How long ago did you have your epidurals?
    I have had 1 and my face was reddish purple for about 4 days but then subsided, very strange!
    It must be something to do with the epidural as it came on straight away.
    Keep us posted.
    Kirsti x
  • ldm314lldm314 Posts: 45
    edited 01/29/2016 - 1:58 PM
    I actually found this post when searching to pose this exact same question - can anyone relate their personal stories on the long term results of steroid injections. I have read all of the scientific resources I can, as well as have had discussions with my doctor about my treatment but it is also good to hear the anecdotal stories as well.

    I have been getting injections for over a year now, 4 last year and in another week I will be having another one. They are tremendously helpful to me and quite literally get me back on my feet. Before scheduling this one, I had the same long term discussion with my doctor and we are in agreement that if this keeps working well for me it is a good alternative to surgery as those are the two options left at this point.

    I am concerned about the longer term issues, especially issues relating to bone damage caused by the steroids. Again, I am in agreement with my doctor that at this point the two options are injections or surgery and in a rarer case of bone issues from the injections in my case it would lead to a similar surgery. With the relief that injections provide, comined with the risks of surgery either now or later, we scheduled an injection session that I am going to be having soon.

    I did get a little sidetracked there, so more to the exact question you were asking about flushing and injections. I get some flushing and hot flashes in the weeks following the injection but it is much more tolerable than the back pain. Medication and procedures cause side effects, that are different in everyone, and you just need to decide if the side effects are better or worse than the relief provided. Another good example I have of this is the medication I take for orthostatic hypotension. It causes me frequent goosebumps and chills, while annoying I would much rather have that than passing out and injuring myself when I stand up.
    All questions and answers are given from a personal perspective only. I have congenital stenosis from C4-C7, and T7-S1. I am actively being seen my by doctor and following his advice. I strongly suggest that you do the same.
  • its a double edge sword everything has its good and bad too many epidurals can cause weakness in the back as well. Also there are certain spinal epidural meds that are not FDA approved for spinal injections so do your reading up on them, side effects are warning signs, and a flush, shortness of breath, headache is something you can research as well called a spinal tap, wet tap, if the injection goes into the spinal space or spinal fluid please be your own advocates and research whats being done to your body...I'm not a dr just been through enough to speak on my own expierence
    This can't be happening
  • My daughter had 18 steroid injections from a Dr. @ the Pain Clinic to avoid back surgery.  W/continued back pain, she ended up having back surgery anyway which DID help w/the leg pain & somewhat w/low back pain.

    Unfortunately, the result of too many steroid injections has caused Pseudotumor Cerebri & Papilledema...swelling of brain & behind eyes w/some peripheral blindness.  Also, she has thinning of bones in her spine which is causing the collapse of  the discs above the L5-S1 discs where the surgery had been performed, w/hardware.  The Dr. never warned her of the long term effects of too many steroid injections which have caused her these problems which cannot be undone.

    Has anyone had problems like these w/too many steroid injections??  If so, is Dr. responsible for causing these terrible side effects & should he be reprimanded from Medical Board...or taken to court..or would either of these be of ANY effect @ all??  Or, is it just too late for ANY thing to be done?  

    Maybe this could be a warning to others to not have as many injections done to them in the future!?!?   This occurred over 15 years ago for injections w/spine surgery occurring in 2001. 

    Thank you for reading this post & offering any advice you may be able to give.
  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,856
    There are several different types of steroids that can be used for Epidurals.  One of them ( I dont know the medical name ) is known to cause rashes and breakouts..

    As far as long term usage of steroids.  Most doctors will limit the use to 3 times a year.  
    After about 15 ESIs over the years and about 12 steroid injections into my Shoulders and Hips I developed medical cataracts.  One of the major causes of this is steroids.   But that worked out for me.  I had the cataract surgery and went from 20/200 to 20/20 in one day!
    Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
  • SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 5,459
    Hello Mombo1022!
    Welcome to Spine-Health
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  • I have had around 13 injections steroid and two of them have had lasting effects. One was a little over two years ago I knew when he injected something went wrong. The pain was off the charts for about two weeks, high heart rate, sweating, hot flushed face, trembles, left leg weak/pain it never recovered from it. Then I had one about one month ago and now the pain in both legs, feet has jumped making it hard to walk. It reminds me of the other injection but never to this degree. It could be something else but sure is funny how pain once in awhile in my left foot and leg is now so extreme in both after the injection. He apologized for what he said would be a bruise and it was about the size of a tennis ball and is still sore a little bit. I see him next week so we will see what he says.

    The thing is when you are in so much pain and they offer no other options what do you do. I even begged for one before so desperate. The only thing that upsets me other than they don't tell you all the risks (I guess we should research more and know them) is that not all the tests are done before an injection that have less risk. I strongly feel they are used too much and other options are not used just me.

    Good luck Sherri

  • I've been fortunate that all the Facet Joint Injections I've had work for a little while.  I have high confidence with my PM along with his staff.  Unfortunately for me, the shots only work for a couple months, then I need more.  When that happens, I have to fight with Worker's Comp to cover the injections.  Perhaps you should get a second opinion to see if another doctor thinks the issue may be handled differently? 
    Several Epidurals, L4-S1 360 ALIF, Numerous Facet Joint Injections, RFA x2
  • Max_LeeMax_Lee New York, United StatesPosts: 88
    I've had skyrockets in pain and syncope after epidurals, as well as some monster headaches. I only tried them because I'm getting desperate. One more, and then I am done with people messing around with needles near my spine. Such...fond memories I have of the last time I trusted someone to touch my neck.
    Kieran Lee
     "The loneliest people are the kindest. The saddest people smile the
    brightest. The most damaged people are the wisest. All because they do
    not wish to see anyone else suffer the way they do.''-Anonymous

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