The type of sedation used for spinal injections can vary depending on the type of procedure as well as patient preference. Generally, spinal injections are most commonly performed with local or regional anesthesia with minimal sedation.
Local anesthesia blocks some or all feeling in the area being injected, while regional anesthesia is used to block nerves that supply sensation to the injection site.
Minimal sedation involves the use of intravenous (IV) medications that reduce anxiety and allow the patient to remain conscious while receiving the injection. This can be done with benzodiazepines (such as midazolam or lorazepam), opiates (such as oxycodone or hydrocodone), or a combination.
The medications are generally administered in a very low-dose, typically ranging from 2 to 10 milligrams. IV sedation is typically monitored by trained medical personnel and reversed if necessary.
For more complex or extensive spinal injection procedures, general anesthesia may be used. This involves the use of controlled medications to keep the patient asleep through the entire procedure. Depending on the specific procedure and the length of time needed, general anesthesia may be administered intravenously, through inhalation, or a combination of both.
General anesthesia is typically administered and monitored by a board-certified anesthesiologist or other healthcare provider who is trained and experienced in the use of anesthesia.
Table of Contents
Can you be put to sleep for a spinal injection?
Yes, you can be put to sleep for a spinal injection. The process is known as “sedation” and is often done to help make the procedure more comfortable to the patient. Depending on the patient’s preferences and the complexity of the procedure, sedation may involve administration of medications such as benzodiazepines or other drugs, or anesthesia.
Careful monitoring of the patient’s vital signs is necessary while they are sedated to ensure they stay safe. Some of the benefits of sedation include reducing anxiety and fear, improving patient comfort, helping the patient remain still during the procedure, and reducing the amount of time it takes to complete the procedure.
Additionally, sedation can help with pain management and reduce associated discomfort. While there are many benefits to sedation for a spinal injection, it is important to discuss the risks associated with sedation prior to the procedure with your health care provider.
Are you awake during an epidural steroid injection?
No, you are usually not awake during an epidural steroid injection. This procedure is usually performed under local anesthesia and is done outpatient. Depending on the doctor, you may be sedated in order to minimize any discomfort during the procedure.
During the procedure, a needle is placed near the affected nerve root and a very small amount of steroid is then injected. Once it is injected, you will typically feel improvement in pain within a few days.
How long does a spinal injection procedure take?
The time it takes to complete a spinal injection procedure varies depending on the specific procedure being performed, but typically the procedure can take anywhere from 15 minutes to 1 hour. During a spinal injection procedure, the patient may be given an anesthetic to numb the area, followed by an injection of medication into the target area of the spine.
The doctor may also take x-rays or perform other tests prior to the injection to ensure accuracy. After the injection, patients may feel some discomfort in the area, but it should subside quickly. Patients are usually advised to rest for a few minutes after the procedure, but most are able to return home the same day.
How painful is a lumbar epidural steroid injection?
Although lumbar epidural steroid injections may cause some discomfort during the procedure, most people report that the overall experience of a lumbar epidural steroid injection is not very painful. Both the local anesthetic and the anti-inflammatory steroids that are injected can help to reduce the pain associated with the procedure.
Additionally, the physician will use a fluoroscope to guide the needle into the epidural space, eliminating the need for a large bore needle or a blind injection. Many people report that the mild discomfort associated with the local anesthetic injection is worse than the discomfort experienced during the entire procedure.
In addition, many people’s pain symptoms are significantly improved following the injection, providing long-term relief.
Is a spinal injection painful?
A spinal injection is not necessarily a painful procedure, although some people may experience slight pain or discomfort. Generally, the level of pain will depend on the individual and the type of injection being performed.
Commonly, people experience a stinging sensation during the injection. However, if more significant pain is felt, it may be necessary to use an anesthetic (such as lidocaine or bupivacaine) prior to the injection.
Some healthcare providers may also use additional techniques to help reduce pain, such as applying topical numbing cream or using ultrasound guidance during the injection. It is important to talk to the healthcare provider performing the injection in order to get an idea of what kind of pain is expected.
How long after epidural can you walk?
It is generally safe for a person to walk shortly after they have received an epidural, although this will vary depending on the person and the situation. Generally, an individual may be able to walk up to one to two hours after their epidural, but it is important to follow the specific instructions of the individual’s medical provider.
During the epidural, an anesthetic is injected into the lower back, which helps to numb the nerves in the lower body, decreasing sensation and allowing for a lowered feeling of pain. As the epidural settles in, it is important to wait until full sensation has returned before attempting to walk.
During this time, it may be beneficial to lay down and move one’s legs gently to help reduce any tightness that may have developed after the injection. Once sensation has returned, an individual may be able to take a few steps, however, it is important to ensure that they have sufficient assistance, such as a nurse or family member, should any balance issues arise.
Additionally, it is advised that an individual wear loose and comfortable clothes, such as pants and a shirt, to make walking easier.
How long should you rest after epidural injection?
Generally, it is recommended to rest for 24 to 48 hours following an epidural injection to allow the injection time to settle. After the injection it’s important to avoid strenuous activities, such as heavy lifting, standing for long periods of time, or exercising, as this may cause the injected medication to spread to areas it shouldn’t and can lead to complications.
Ice packs, rest, and pain relieving medications can help manage discomfort. It is also important to pay attention to any changes in symptoms and report any side effects or increasing discomfort to a doctor.
Most patients are advised to slowly increase activity levels after a few days of exhausting the epidural’s effects.
What does an epidural injection feel like?
An epidural injection is usually done as a series of injections into the epidural space in the spine. The first injection may be felt as a stinging or burning sensation as the anesthetic is injected.
This sensation generally last for a few seconds. The second injection is where the steroid is injected, and this generally isn’t felt at all.
After the injection, some people may experience increased pain in the injection area that can last for several hours, along with some tingling or numbness in the area. It’s also common for the anesthetic to cause a feeling of warmth or heavy sensations in the area of the injection.
Generally, these sensations are temporary and subside as the body adjusts to the injection.
For those who may be anxious and concerned about the pain associated with an epidural injection, reassurance that the injection is relatively quick and is not necessarily painful. Most patients report that the uncomfortable sensations are minor, and they are replaced by relief from the pain associated with their condition.