The benefits from the first shot only lasted 2 weeks. The second and third set of injections lasted about 90 days. In November, I was ready to have surgery. My EMG and nerve conduction tests proved that the nerves were "sleeping" before I was. After another MRI, the neurosurgeon said I was a candidate for surgery but I was not able to get the endoscopic type surgery that is less invasive. I would have an incision about 6-8" long. Along with removing the herniation, they would have to increase the size of the hole where the nerve roots were going through.
Following aspiration of the prepatellar bursa, a pressure dressing should be applied, and the patient should remain in the supine position for several minutes. Following injection, the joint or injected region may be put through passive range of motion. The patient should remain in the office for 30 minutes after the injection to monitor for any adverse reactions. In general, patients should avoid strenuous activity involving the injected region for several days. Patients should be cautioned that they may experience worsening symptoms during the first 24 to 48 hours related to a possible steroid flare, which can be treated with ice and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. Patients should be instructed against the application of heat. A follow-up appointment should be scheduled within three weeks.
For many people, back pain goes away on its own or with nonsurgical treatments. Epidural steroid injections shouldn't typically be used as a first-line therapy for back pain relief, but that doesn't mean they can't play a role in treating pain. But injections won't cure the underlying cause of back pain, and they provide only temporary relief. Unfortunately, in many cases, chronic back pain can't be cured, but must instead be managed, like other chronic conditionsand patients must have realistic expectations of what epidurals can do.