Limited mobility and close-to-unbearable pain in the back are not something to put on the back burner. If you experience anything like that, you have to seek treatment immediately. Most often, you will need to see a physical therapist to hammer out a personalized exercising plan. In other cases, your doctor and you may consider getting steroids in the epidural injection procedure to soothe spinal nerves and promote faster healing. But are you better off having an epidural if you just want to feel well again? That’s the question that yet needs to be answered.
Many choose to receive epidurals voluntarily as they are said to provide pain relief. These injections are administered into the outermost area of the spinal cavity to target damaged nerve roots, thereby alleviating the discomfort they inflict. When combined with oral medications and physical therapy, epidurals may turn out to be somewhat helpful to ease pain associated with:
- long-lasting chronic conditions affecting the back or limbs
- spinal stenosis
- bone spurs and joint problems
- herniated disk
Despite the increased pain after epidural steroid injections, some patients report the reduction in swelling and relief over time. Of all the cases, however, only a few still experience positive effects of the procedure in a month, meaning that others need to have it repeated. Taking the risks that lie behind it into account, getting another series of epidurals may not be a good call.
Are epidural steroid injections safe?
It’s a popular misconception that the epidural steroid injection procedure is risk-free. As it involves the administration of medications into the spinal cavity, it can never be 100% safe. It requires a practitioner to have consummate skills to give an injection without causing damage to the spinal nerves or the tissue around them. Otherwise, complications are likely to develop shortly after the treatment.
Apart from the increased post-procedure pain, there are other potential dangers of epidural steroid injections:
- moderate-to-severe headache
- skin rash, tingling, and hot flashes
- bleeding caused by the vessel damage during the procedure
- post-injection nerve inflammation, leading to fungal meningitis
- spinal cord injuries that come with the increased risk of nerve paralysis
The complications associated with the procedure also depend on the type of epidural steroid injections. It is determined by the location of the injection site – neck, middle or low back. The last two types are respectively called thoracic and lumbar epidurals, and their risks are similar to those mentioned above. But when a steroid injection is administered in the neck (cervical epidural), the post-procedure dangers are even more frightening. For example, if nerves are inadvertently damaged by the needle, or if it is misplaced, the risk of stroke or death will be substantially high.
What is the best alternative to avoid complications after epidural steroid injections?
Judge for yourself – does it make any sense to receive a series of injections that come with severe health consequences to experience far-fetched pain relief? If you think benefits do not outweigh the risks involved, you may want to consider the risk-free treatment option called PEMF therapy. What makes it so safe is that it doesn’t encompass any surgical interventions and injections that may cause spinal cord damage. PEMF therapy is also known to have no side effects, and patients of all ages can benefit from it.
It is reported that people who have received PEMF therapy experience short-term or long-term pain relief and mobility improvement. Thanks to personally fine-tuned electromagnetic stimulation, it also reduces inflammation and minimizes pressure on your spinal cord, helping manage sciatic nerves. On the whole, patients feel the effects almost immediately and without the dangers of epidural steroid injections.
Being healthy is easier than you think
ALMAGIA International® is looking forward to helping those who suffer from sciatica, joint injuries, or spinal stenosis. Now it’s your call to add PEMF therapy to your must-follow treatment list or not. If you choose to try it, we recommend going for Almag-01 specifically designed to be used for these conditions along with physical therapy. With this device, you will forget about pain from epidural steroid injections once and for all.
Almag+ is another PEMF solution that offers you all the benefits of low-field stimulation. Like Almag-01, it is effective to deal with spinal cord and joint problems, yet it boasts additional functionality. Or you can take a closer look at Almag-02 – a powerful electromagnetic pain reliever and muscle soother.