Lumbar Caudal Epidural Steroid Injection:
What is Lumbar Caudal Epidural Steroid Injection?
Lumbar Caudal Epidural Steroid Injection is a medical procedure designed to alleviate pain and inflammation in the lower back and legs caused by certain spinal conditions. The procedure involves the administration of a combination of corticosteroids and a local anesthetic into the caudal epidural space, which is the region near the tailbone (sacrum). This injection delivers medication directly to the affected nerve roots and surrounding tissues, reducing inflammation and providing pain relief.
Why a caudal epidural rather than another approach?
Caudal epidurals are typically performed in patients who have had previous back surgery. In a post laminectomy or post fusion patient the epidural space may be scarred from surgery. It is a less risky procedure for a postoperative patient and equivalent to a traditional epidural approach.
Conditions Treated by Lumbar Caudal Epidural Steroid Injection
This treatment is commonly recommended for patients experiencing pain and discomfort related to the following conditions:
Lumbar Herniated Disc: When a disc in the lower back presses against a nerve, it can cause pain, numbness, and weakness in the leg.
Lumbar Spinal Stenosis: Narrowing of the spinal canal in the lower back, leading to nerve compression and pain.
Degenerative Disc Disease: The breakdown of spinal discs, resulting in pain and inflammation.
Sciatica: Pain that radiates along the sciatic nerve, often originating from the lower back and extending down the leg.
Spondylolisthesis: When a vertebra slips forward over the one below it, causing lower back pain and leg discomfort.
Anesthesia: Sedation is recommended for a caudal epidural because it involves placing the needle just above the tailbone (a sensitive area). It can be done under local anesthesia in certain patients who do not want or tolerate sedation. The procedure takes about 5-10 minutes to perform.
During the procedure, you will be comfortably positioned lying face down. Dr. Edward Rubin, MD, will cleanse and numb the injection site to ensure minimal discomfort. Using fluoroscopic guidance (real-time X-ray), the precise location for the injection is identified, ensuring accurate delivery of the medication.
After entering the caudal space a catheter is threaded to the affected area. The combination of corticosteroids and anesthetic is then slowly injected into the caudal epidural space. The entire process typically takes only a few minutes. After the procedure, you will be monitored briefly before being discharged to recover at home.
Risks and Potential Side Effects
While Lumbar Caudal Epidural Steroid Injection is generally considered safe, it is essential to be aware of potential risks and side effects, which may include:
Temporary Increase in Pain: Some patients may experience mild discomfort at the injection site for a short period after the procedure.
Infection: Although rare, there is a minimal risk of infection at the injection site.
Allergic Reaction: A reaction to the injected medications, though uncommon, is possible.
Bleeding: In rare cases, bleeding may occur at the injection site.
Nerve Damage: Unintended damage to nerves near the injection site is exceedingly rare but possible.
If you are experiencing persistent lower back or leg pain and suspect you may benefit from Lumbar Caudal Epidural Steroid Injection, don’t hesitate to take action. Contact our office and make an appointment with Dr. Edward Rubin and his dedicated team who will provide you with personalized and effective pain management solutions.
Don’t let pain hold you back – Dr. Edward Rubin, MD, is here to help you reclaim your life and live pain-free!