Welcome, Friend!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Protect anonymity
We strongly suggest that members do not include their email addresses. Once that is published , your email address is available to anyone on the internet , including hackers.

All discussions and comments that contain an external URL will be automatically moved to the spam queue. No external URL pointing to a medical web site is permitted. Forum rules also indicate that you need prior moderator approval. If you are going to post an external URL, contact one of the moderators to get their approval.
There are no medical professionals on this forum side of the site. Therefore, no one is capable or permitted to provide any type of medical advice.
This includes any analysis, interpretation, or advice based on any diagnostic test

The main site has all the formal medical articles and videos for you to research on.

Bruising and Pain after botched ESI

Monte_PMMonte_P Posts: 1
edited 01/04/2015 - 2:47 AM in Spinal Injections
Hello. First off, I'm in the Army (active duty), and have been for 16 years, so my hands are pretty much tied when it comes to docs I'm allowed to see. Quick history, pretty severe DDD with moderate to severe spinal stenosis at L3/4, L4/5, and L5/S1. Had at least 30 ESIs between 2005 & 2010 to help keep me in the fight. Had a laminectomy performed at the L4/5 level in 2011. The laminectomy restored feeling to my right leg and allowed me to walk without a cane. Within two months of the procedure I was out running and doing physical fitness like all of my battle buddies. The only complication following the surgery was every now & then I'd get a sensation like someone was sticking a needle in my left hip flexor, but overall I was very happy with the results.

Anyway, that's brings me to 2014. While performing my duties, I was in a car accident which left me with 7 broken ribs (3 severely displaced), 3 broken spinal processes in my T spine, a collapsed lung, and multiple other injuries. Pretty much shot my career to hell within seconds..... In an attempt by the Army to help me limp to the finish line (20 year retirement), they enrolled me in an extensive pain management program. At first I had a very experienced doctor but he's always booked and his appointments are usually two months out. My pain can't wait that long, so I opted to see a less experienced doc, one whose appointments are usually a week or two out. He's very optimistic, but not in a good way, more of an expirimental way, which isn't good.

After a couple of appointments, he starts talking prolo therapy, trigger point injections, and of course ESIs. See, following the accident I have secere pain in my upper back, neck, and back rib area to go along with my lower back woes which got A LOT worse following the accident. I decided to let him go for the ESI first, because I've had so many of them and they've always worked great for me....relief anywhere from 6-8 weeks depending on how rigorous things were at work. I never had a bad ESI until this time. First, he weirdly asked me where I wanted him to inject, at the facet joints or in the epidural cavity. I looked at him weirdly and said "hey bud you're the doctor, but all my past ones were into the epidural space". He says ok, and proceeds to poke & prod my L4/5 for no less than 20 minutes, which is far longer than its taken any other doc to complete the whole procedure. He then tells me he's failed and that because I've had a laminectomy there was excess blood vessels and he was having a hard time avoiding them, so then he informs me that he's moving up to L3/4, and pokes around up there for another 15 minutes. Once again he informed me that he'd failed and said he was going back down to L4/5. At this point I was sweating profusely, light headed, and had the most sever headache I've ever had. At that point I said STOP THE MADNESS and he aborted the procedure. I could tell he was in a panic because his voice was very shaky and he kept asking the X-ray guys to make sure they saved certain images from throughout the procedure. He then had me wait in the waiting room for 45 minutes and sent me home. i had that headache and extreme LBP for at least 48 hours following the procedure. The doc called me, which was also a red flag because military docs NEVER call to check on patients personally. I started to wonder what exactly he'd done that he wasn't telling me. I told him the headache had gotten better and he expressed relief, said he though he'd punctured my thecal sack but assured me since the headache had gone away he was sure hadn't.

About 5 days after the procedure, I'm up for roughly 5 hours cooking thanksgiving dinner, when I suddenly could not walk on my own, my fiancé had to help me to the bed, which is where I remained for the next day or two. Also, I looked at my back in the mirror and saw two quarter sized bruises, one on each side of my spine. The bruises were very sensitive to the touch, identical, and each was 3-4 inches away from my actual spine. Right after thanksgiving break I had a follow up with the doc, where he informed me he had no idea what the bruises were or what was causing that spike in pain. It was at the same appointment that I informed him I was requesting a different doc. Since then, I've basically met resistance because I'm limited to seeing docs within the same office. Since that procedure my back has gone out twice, once requiring an emergency room visit, and the bruises have increased to about the size of apples. A nurse told me they were just "healing" bruises, but even after my accident I had the worst bruising of my life and they disappeared within about 4 weeks. It's bern 6 weeks since the procedure. Is there any doc on this site who can tell me what he possibly did wrong?


Sign In or Register to comment.