I have had several of these. If you are concerned, then ask how many years of experience the doctor performing your injections has, and make sure it is a minimum of 10 and preferably more yet.
I have had getting my blood drawn hurt more than having selective nerve root blocks. When done by a good doctor, they don't hurt much at all, don't take long, and afterwords you'll wonder why you got so upset ahead of time. The risks are very minimal with this test, but anytime they inject near or into the spine they of course have to let you know there are very rare risks of something going wrong like the nerve being hit. Even if that did happen to you, the pain is very short lived and you won't be traumatized by it.
As brendaks stated you want an experienced anesthesiologist..
If you are lucky to find one with 10 years experience great! If you are outside major metropolitan area you may not have that luxury. I live in the largest city in my state which is also the state capitol. Sadly it doesn't qualify as a true metropolis.
I had to move to Baltimore to get treatment for my depression because there isn't the mental health infrastructure. Now I'm back where I grew up because needed the family support after I had a blackout induced by my depression while driving.
So back to my point of this post. [B][I][U]Make sure its an MD anesthesiologist that is at least a specialist physician, no fellowships or below...[/U][/I][/B]
I had a LMNP try to do trigger point injections once. Never again! Teaching hospitals will have fellowships, basically full doctors working on their specialization. I've had success with trigger point injections done by a fellowship but insisted on having a full specialist supervising in case he needed to step in. [B]But I wouldn't trust a fellowship for basal nerve blocks.
So far I have had 9 basal branch nerve blocks. [B]First one caused my other 3 back quadrants to over compensate so since then Ive insisted that they do my quadrants 2 at a time in symmetrical pairs[/B]. So then the next 4 were done in pairs as an evaluation for RFA therapy. So then I had 2 RFAs in my lower back a week apart. They can't do RFAs in pairs since each procedure takes 90 minutes. Then 4 more basal branch nerve blocks in my upper back before they did the 2 RFAs in my upper back.
I'm not sure if I will go back for another nerve root block as I had some problems last time. The first needle on my right side went in fine but when the doctor put the needle in to the left side they did the CT scan again but it wasn't in the correct spot. As I have more pain on the left side I presume that there is a lot less room for the nerve on that side and it took 3 goes and CT scans to get that side right along side of the vertebrae and into the space along side of the L5 nerve root. So I assume the doctor stabbed the nerve a couple of times or it felt like it.
Anyhow when I got up to walk it felt sore and that was ok I understood except I also had pain in my butt right in close to my pelvice and since then about 3 months I am due for another round of shots but that side is still every bit as sore as it was the first day. Not only that but now my other side is getting sore also to the point where the pain in my lower back is actually being overtaken by the sciatica (leg pain). So I don't know if the doctor stirred things up or if this is a natural progression of sciatica caused by the spinal stenosis that I have been diagnosed with.
So I don't really want anyone trying to push a needle up alongside the nerves that are already compressed according to my specialist and new neurosurgeon. So my walking is getting worse and I am not able to walk as far to get any exercise. It also gets sore after swimming now which is my main exercise now or was anyway.
The pool has got cold now anyway as we have had some of the most rain and wind for this season in some places for over 100 years. I am going to now have to find somewhere with a heated pool and do some hydro therapy.
Sorry to get off track there. I just wanted to say that only for the butt pain the injections did help for about 2 months just I had this problem that others including yourself may not and You might have some good results.
PS Myofascial pain: I just wondered if anyone had mentioned to you about highlighting with large black letters and underlining. It seems very imposing and over bearing especially too new members, and we will read your thread any way without the highlighting. I don't want to seem sarcastic at all I just wanted to let you know before someone may feel belittled.
Last edited by allanbruce; 03-07-2010 at 08:04 AM.
[QUOTE=allanbruce;4199204][B]PS Myofascial pain: I just wondered if anyone had mentioned to you about highlighting with large black letters and underlining. It seems very imposing and over bearing especially too new members, and we will read your thread any way without the highlighting. I don't want to seem sarcastic at all I just wanted to let you know before someone may feel belittled.[/B][/QUOTE]
Actually the bold and italics are not meant to belittle. If you haven't noticed I can blather a lot! So the emphasis is meant to make what I feel the point of all my rambling is. I know I could be more concise... maybe I'll just switch to lighter colors for my stories. I probably could have just stated those 3 lines. I just end uo being a storyteller type of poster... :shrug: I think its I want to put things in context or give my reasoning behind the thought. Anyway my point is I'm long winded and I know its a bad habit. I'm also enthusiastic about contributing if it has the slightest possibility of being useful to anyone.
So my apologies... I'll find a way of toning down my posts.
Thanks for not taking this the wrong way MP. And I don't want to belittle this thread also so back to the nerve block injections.
Has anyone else had problems with the injections? I am also not sure if they have effected my hormone levels as I have had to get testosterone injections because of my low levels. I am not sure if it is from the injection of steroids or if I have been effected by the pain killers or maybe both. Just another thing to watch out for when watching for side effects. I have also been warned that the steroids can effect your bones as well. I am not sure of that though.
I asked the 1st question about the nerve block I was going to get. Well I got it monday & by wed my pain was back & very bad much worse then before & even on the other side which I never had before. I feel like theres a knife in my groin. I called & they sd once in a great while it doesn't work for somone (lucky me) They called in pain killers for me to take. Are there conditions that shouldn't have this done. I also have a tarluv cyst that he sd not to worry about I was born w/it.
I had the nerve root block last monday & have spoken about it to alot of nice people on these boards. I sd the pain came back the same as before, I called them & they sd sometimes not many don't take & it doesn't work. ACTUALLY it not only came back but much worse then it was before I went in. I used to have some pain once in awhile, NOW it is constant & really bad. I am so mad & so sorry I had it done. If he thinks I'm paying for a return visit & throw away more money to tell him that he's crazy, I will tell his nurse who by the way called in pain killers, there's nothing else I would want him to do he caused enough problems!
Please consider other options they may provide for you. If the doctor who did the block is a Pain Management doctor there are many options. Nerve blocks don't work on everyone, if the nerve is irrittated it should calm down in a few days. Some anti-inflammatories may help as well.
I did have nerve blocks done and they worked for a short while. The SI joint ablation I had done lasted for about 4 months and is worth doing againif I get 4 more months of relief.