Spinal injections for bulging disc & trapped sciatic nerve

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Has anyone had success with the spinal injections for a trapped sciatic nerve?

Did it hurt?

Has it helped?

How long has it helped for?

Ive been in hospital for the past 12 days due to sciatic nerve pain, leg weakness and bladder issues and had the choice of injections or surgery. Im only 27 so surgery is a last resort so ive opted for injections. Im booked in for them on Tuesday (they wanted to keep me in over the weekend until I had them but I talked them into letting me home as it was driving me bonkers in hospital!)

I just wanted any advice, opinions, outcomes please.

Part of me thinks I should have just had the surgery and got it out of the way as I will probably end up that way anyway but I really dont want the surgery unless its the last resort.

Many thanks for anyones help

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8 Replies

  • Posted

    Hi Amzy87, it's a difficult decision but wait and see how the injection goes. It's not long to go and you should know within a week if they are going to help. I've had them for 4 years to push back the surgery option. However now need surgery because as you rightly say, it is something that happens eventually. 

    I had injections of steroid directly into the area where the nerve was impinged. It did hurt, they use a local anaesthetic but you can still feel the pain. I took paracetamol and ibruprofen just before the injections. 

    Hopefully if the injection does not help, they will quickly get you into surgery. 

    I had around 6 months of reduced pain from the first injections but that time frame has reduced until I had no benefit. 

    There are medications that can help with nerve pain too. I'm on Lyrica which does take the edge of the sciatic pain and helps with sleep. 

    Good luck for Tuesday and let us know how you get on. 

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  • Posted

    I had a lumbar epidural formy L5/L5 disc herniation. The procedure itself was simple and painless, however the pain relief lasted about 24 hours once the anesthetic had worn off. It was done on a Thursday and Friday was the best day I had had in a very long time, but Saturday I was in pain again. I wouldn't have another.

    I am now, after numerous sessions of Physio, pushing for a fusion. As speak I am flat out on my back in immense pain with a TENs machine strapped to my back. Diclofenac won't work, nor will co-codomol. I had to call in sick to work today - feel utterly useless!

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  • Posted

    I had two of the injections and they did not help.  Yet I know other people that it did help - one in my office got one LAST Christmas and it is still working.  It does not hurt at all.
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  • Posted

    Hi amzy 87. Sorry to hear about your pain, its so horrible and frustrating!!!

    I am having surgery for L4, L5, S1 - herniation and degenerative. Am having a fusion and decompression in July. I've been in pain with my back and legs with sciatica since 2009 and have had various X rays, MRI's, Physio, Consultations, Epidurals, Lumbar and Nerve Root Blocks.

    The Epidural gave me some relief for about 2 weeks.

    The first Nerve Root Block was really painful but worked for about 3 weeks, I went back for the second was really nervous and broke down crying. Thank goodness he said I didnt really need it as he knew the exact area that gave relief.

    Am now back to using a walking stick where I feel really conscious and paranoid of people watching me???

    Am taking Naproxen (pain rellief), Omeprazole (gastro resistant due to Naproxen), Gabapentin (pain relief), Marol (modified release otherwise known as Tramadol, pain relief), Paracetamol (works in conjunction with the Tramadol, pain relief) on top of that I am taking Bendroflumethiazide ( high blood pressure) and Citalopram (antidepressant)

    Am having another MRI this Friday in readiness for my operation which I am sort of excited about in one way as the Surgeon said it'll take away about 70% of the pain, and dreading it in another way thinking of the recovery ...

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    • Posted

      Hi Cat, I'm having TLIF surgery and decompression on two levels - L4/L5 and L5/S1 in 2 weeks. I'm now on crutches and taking Lyrica, co-codamol and oramorph. I'm really looking forward to the surgery. Have been eating really healthily to help with the recovery plus trying to do some exercise even if it's a walk. I'm hoping that although I'm 48, I'm healthy and was exercising 4-5 times a week until January, then twice a week until March, I'm hoping that my recovery will be good. 
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  • Posted

    Hi just wondering how your injection went.i have had siatica pain for neatly 3 months MRI showed 3/4to L5/S1 disc degeneration. disc protrusion impinging on S1 nerve root and disc bulges at L4/55 and L5/S1.having hosp physio tried acupuncture made it worse now waiting for pain management clinic for spinal injection and have been referred to a surgeon

    taking lot's of meds to get through the day co-codamal, marol (slow release tramodol) ibrupofen, gabapentin, amitriptyline and oramorph for break through pain also have diazepam but not sure if thats safe to take with the oramorph.

    hope your pain more under control now.

    So tired only getting 2-3 hrs sleep at a time not been to bed for over 10 wks ad horrendous to get out if bed, fef up just want it to go away. ......

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  • Posted

    Hi there,

    I've had two nerve root blocks and neither worked in terms of pain relief for me, although it does work fpr some people. The second time they perferated my spinal cord and I had the most bizarre headache that only happened when I stood up, luckily it went after four days! Good luck with your treatment.

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