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ESI- Level of sedation

JAustin23JJAustin23 Posts: 6
edited 12/12/2014 - 10:32 AM in Spinal Injections
I have had two spinal injections- one where I was totally under and another with the minimal amount of sedation possible. I was in excruciating pain for a week after the first ESI and my pain management doctor told me that the more sedation you receive, the more pain you are in after the injection. For my second injection, I had hardly any sedation and I could feel the pain throughout the whole procedure. It was horrible and I was crying on the table. Has anyone else heard anything about the level of sedation and its correlation to pain after the procedure? I want to avoid the horrible pain I was in for a week after the first ESI so if bearing through the pain during the injection is beneficial then I will be glad I suffered through it instead of being totally sedated.


  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 11,349
    at all disc levels.
    Some with sedation, some without, but none with anything close to heavy sedation. I was always totally awake and aware of thre procedure.
    The amount of sedation should have no impact on any post injection pain.
    From my own experience and the hundreds and hundreds of other threads/posts about ESI, the two most important asepects are

    1. The injection is guided by fluoroscope or another X-ray device
    2. The correct environment for the injection is setup

    #1 is pretty straight forward. Without the aid of a device, the doctor would then have to do the injection based on his naked eye examination. I wouldn't want any doctor to do that to me.

    #2, Where it is being done. About 80% of my ESI's were done in a sterile operating room environment. With nurses and vital signs being monitored all the time. The ESIs I had problems with are those done in a doctor's office, without any staff.

    I've always had to wait in a recovery like room after my ESI for about 20 minutes. Then all my vitals were take and if they were ok, they would release me to someone who was driving me. If I didnt have a driver, they would not release me

    ESI's are designed to help patients It may be a fact that not every one benefits from these ESIs, but no one should be in a lot of pain for days afterward. To me, that says something went wrong.
    Ron DiLauro Veritas-Health Forums Manager
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
  • SarahLindeauSarahLindeau Posts: 765
    edited 12/12/2014 - 10:57 AM
    Your doc is lying to you
    2015: Thoracic protrusions C7-T1, T3-4, T6-8
    Dec'13: 360FusionL4-S1 w/bone graft
    2013: 3x2-level disc injections: 12mo surgery postponement
    Dec'12: DiscogramL4-S1
    Sep/Oct'12: Bi-lateral Rhizo AblationsL4- S1
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  • Hi, I had my first Lumbar ESI this morning , Beforey injection I wanted sedation, But after meeting with my Dr right before the procedure I changed my mind. He assured me that its virtually painless, and the only discomfort you feel, is a pinch when the numbing med goes in, and pressure when he injects the steroid med, because its thick. My procedure went exactly as he said, it lasted not even 5 min. He was already almost done, and I thought he was still numbing me. Im scheduled for a cervical ESI Jan 5. For me, the decision to not have sedation is much better, as you are alert and can communicate with the Dr. I also think it depends on the Dr, how much experience they have. My doctor is an orthopedic surgeon. I felt so silly, when we were done, fir being so nervous. I know my experience doesnt apply to everyone, but i would advise anyone having an ESI, only use sedation, if its absolutely neccessary, and to have it done by an orthopedic surgeon.
  • I was ready for my injection today but unfortunately i was in horrible pain. I was in the waiting room for over an hour and when i got to the back the assist help me on the table. No one explained any risk what so ever. He pulled my pants down and well i was upset cause it was unexpected he didnt ask or said im going to pull down ur pant, nothing. The doctor came is ask how i was ? Tols hom im in pain. He procreed to clean the area told me ill feel a pinch told him ok. Then after that there was this extreme pressure i started crying it hurt i guess doc tried more numbing medication and tried again because i felt more pain all the way to my leg. Dictor said i need to be sedated . Then that was the last i saw of me doctor. The staff and a doctor i have never met change my pain medicarion norco 10/325 1 tab every six to 1 tab every 12 hours only 40 qty. and i wont seerhe doctor til a month. Til my next attempt for injection. Dont know what next steps to take?
    Gwen loft
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  • Tensing up when they give the injection can cause it to be more painful, as can muscle spasms. Since the directions on your medications were changed, follow the new prescribed directions. Hopefully, with some ice or heat in the area, the flare will recede in a few days.
    When you see the doctor again for follow up, you can discuss the injections, and what the next steps are.
  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 11,349
    Should always be less than painful. The initial sting of the numbing needle is really all you should feel. From that point on there should be little or no pain. But as Sandi stated freezing up is going to make it hurt more . Just like those folks who tighten up right before a flu shot. . It's going hurt then
    Then you might always have a doctor who does not take their time or try to do it with the naked eye
    Ron DiLauro Veritas-Health Forums Manager
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
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