Caudal Steroid Injections for Pain Management
Caudal steroid injections, also known as caudal epidural injections, are a type of injection that is administered into the lower back, or caudal area, to deliver a corticosteroid medication to the spinal canal. The corticosteroid medication is a type of anti-inflammatory drug that can help reduce inflammation and swelling in the spine, which can relieve pain and improve mobility.
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Caudal Steroid Injections Treated Conditions
- Sciatica or Radiculopathy – Sciatica and radiculopathy are two conditions that can cause pain, numbness, and weakness in the lower back, buttocks, and legs. They are often related to problems with the nerves that travel from the lower back through the buttocks and down the legs.
- Spondylosis – Spondylosis is a form of arthritis that can affect the spine and cause pain and stiffness. It is usually caused by the degeneration of the intervertebral discs, which are the cushions between the vertebrae of the spine.
- Facet Joint Pain – Facet joint pain is caused by irritation or inflammation of the facet joints, which are small joints located in the spinal column that provide stability and support to the spine. These joints are found on both sides of each vertebra and allow the spine to move and bend in different directions. Facet joint pain is often caused by wear and tear on the joints, injury, or by other conditions that put strain on the spine, such as obesity or poor posture.
- Degenerative lumbar spinal stenosis (DLSS) – Degenerative lumbar spinal stenosis is a condition that occurs when the spinal canal becomes narrow in the lower back (lumbar region) due to degeneration of the bones, discs, and other structures in the spine. This can cause pressure on the spinal cord and the nerves that branch out from it.
- Herniated and bulging discs – A herniated disc, also known as a ruptured or slipped disc, is a condition in which the soft center of a spinal disc protrudes through a crack in the tough outer layer. This can cause pressure on the spinal cord. A bulging disc is, but the outer layer of the disc is still intact, and the protrusion is smaller. Both herniated and bulging discs can occur in any part of the spine but are most common in the lower back and the neck.
- Failed back syndrome or post-laminectomy syndrome – Failed back syndrome, also known as post-laminectomy syndrome, is a term used to describe persistent pain and other symptoms that occur after surgery to the spine. This can include procedures such as laminectomy (removal of a bony arch from a vertebra), spinal fusion, and spinal decompression.
- Other Back Problems – There are many different types of back problems that can affect people. These may include: scoliosis, osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, and back strain and injury
Why Lonseth Interventional Pain Centers?
At New Orleans’ Lonseth Interventional Pain Centers, we offer the most comprehensive and advanced caudal steroid injections available. Our double board-certified team of knowledgeable physicians has extensive experience in the use of steroid injections for a variety of conditions. We provide personalized care focusing on safety, comfort, and results.
Caudal Steroid Injections FAQ
Talk to your doctor about any medications you are currently taking. You may need to temporarily abstain from taking certain medications, such as blood thinners or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) before the procedure. Wear comfortable, loose-fitting clothing to the procedure. You will need to lie on your stomach on an examination table, so you will need to remove any clothing or jewelry that may get in the way. Finally, follow any other pre-procedure instructions your doctor gives you, such as fasting.
Your doctor will have you lie on your stomach on the examination table. The injection site will be cleaned, and your doctor will numb the area with a local anesthetic. Using a sterile needle, your doctor will inject the corticosteroid medication into the caudal space, which is a small area near the tailbone. You may be monitored for a short period of time after the injection to ensure there are no adverse reactions to the medication.
The effects of the injection may be felt within a few days, but it may take up to a week or more for the full benefits to be realized.
The procedure is typically done with the aid of a local anesthetic to numb the injection site, so it should not be painful. Some people may experience a brief sting when the needle is inserted, but this should only last for a moment. Following the injection, some patients may experience some soreness or tenderness at the injection site, but this should resolve within a few days.
No, a caudal epidural steroid injection is usually done with the aid of a local anesthetic to numb the injection site, so you will not need to be put to sleep for the procedure. You will be awake and alert during the injection, but the area being injected should be numb and you should not feel any pain.
The number of caudal steroid injections a person can have depends on a variety of factors, including the severity of their condition and their response to treatment. In general, caudal injections are usually only recommended for a limited number of times, as repeated injections can potentially cause side effects such as nerve damage or infection. The specific number of injections that is appropriate for you will depend on your individual circumstances and should be determined by your doctor.
Caudal steroid injections may be recommended for individuals who have sciatica, chronic low back pain or leg pain caused by inflammation in the lower back and legs. This type of injection may be particularly beneficial for people who have not responded to other forms of treatment, such as physical therapy or over-the-counter pain medications.
The duration of pain relief after a caudal steroid injection can vary widely from person to person. Some people may experience relief for several weeks or months, while others may only experience relief for a few days. In general, the effects of a caudal steroid injection tend to be temporary and may need to be repeated in the future to maintain relief from pain.
Recovery time after a caudal injection is typically minimal, and most people are able to return to their normal activities within a few hours or days. Some may experience soreness or tenderness at the injection site for a short period of time, but this should resolve on its own within a few days.
After the procedure, you should avoid strenuous physical activities for the remainder of the day, as this can cause the injected muscles to become sore. You should also avoid applying heat to the injection site for the first 24 hours, as this can cause additional swelling and discomfort. You may also be advised to avoid taking nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen, for a few days after the injection, as these medications can interfere with the action of the local anesthetic.
The frequency of caudal injection depends on the individual and their specific condition. It is important to discuss the expected duration of relief and the potential need for future injections with your healthcare provider. Generally, if repeated injections are needed, they are usually spaced out 3-4 weeks apart.