Injections for Back Pain Relief and Symptoms
The most recent data out there suggests that the best way to treat back pain and to prevent the reoccurrences of symptoms is to use a combination of treatments for it. Physical therapy and exercises is appropriate towards treating acute back pain, and to prevent relapse of lower back aches. In the acute phase of pain, patients may need some type of pain treatments to keep their pain from overcoming them, and to keep them going with their exercises (back pain as a result of the exercise may make you feel worse before they make you feel better). Patients may take medications to treat their symptoms, or they make receive injections for back pain relief and symptoms. Injections such as epidural injections are delivered locally to the site of injury. With these injections, they bypass the bloodstream and digestive system and deliver the medications locally to the site of trauma or inflammation. These injections often provide an immediate benefit towards pain reduction, as well as lasting benefits of up to 6 months or more. If successful, the pain reducing benefits will last long enough to the injury to be properly rehabilitated before any more injections are even necessary. Examples of these back pain therapies include epidural injections, facet joint injections, and trigger point injections. The discipline of medicine that provides back pain treatments such as injections and nerve blocks is known as interventional pain management.
Epidural Injections: Epidural steroid injections are the most common interventional pain management procedures. In the first step of the procedure, a local anesthetic is used to numb the skin and the area of the injection. Then pain specialist doctors or neurosurgeons inject a steroid directly into the sac (dura) surrounding the verve roots that contain cerebrospinal fluid. The cerebrospinal fluid provides protection to the nerve roots as well as the delivery system of nutrients. These injections can have long lasting effects towards pain reduction but are not designed to treat the source of the problem. These procedures carry the risks of weakening the bones and immune system suppression.
Facet Joint Injections: The facet joints are located near the nerve roots and are at the site of the termination of the cauda equina. If the faced joints become irritated or inflamed, then they could become the source of your back pain. Doctors can successfully treat inflamed facet joints with a local corticosteroid injection, lidocaine, or anesthetic. Patients and doctors will need to consider against repeated use of these treatments because of the possibility of degeneration of the facet joints as a result of repeat exposures.
Trigger Point Injections: Trigger points are specific regions of skeletal muscles that have the ability to cause rediating pain in the entire muscle or region of that muscle if there are touched or have some type of pressure applied to it. If trigger points of muscles are compressed as a result of injury or inflammation, they may cause spasms to the muscle, and the patient may experience severe pain there. The program of trigger point injection treatment includes first applying a local anesthetic agent (such as bupivacaine or lidocaine) and then a synthetic substance than prevents or reduces back spasms.