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A 37-year-old female asked:

During my1st labor i had an epidural, it seemed to wear off on one side. i could feel pain on my left & my left thigh was on fire. 13 years later, my menstral cramps feel that way. why?

4 doctor answers11 doctors weighed in
Dr. Mark Gujer md fasa
Anesthesiology 27 years experience
Not Related: It is not that uncommon for an epidural to function better on on side over the other. This is due to many factors but include gravity of local anesthetic moving toward to lower side if you lay on your side and local more easily traveling to one side over the other simply by difference in pressure gradients. If this resolved completely after your labor then this recurrence is coincidence.
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Dr. Laura Hulbert
41 years experience
Uterine position: Could be the position of your uterus, or simply how your body transmits pain signals from the pelvis.
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Dr. Julian Goldman
Anesthesiology 37 years experience
Doubt are related: Sometimes an epidural is more effective for one side of the body than the other. If that happens, the anesthesiologist may pull back the catheter a little, or may administer a different concentration of medication. Sometimes the epidural has to be completely removed and a new one inserted. I can't think of a reason that your menstrual cramps would have the same pattern as your labor pain.
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Dr. Tarek Shahbandar
Anesthesiology 23 years experience
I agree. Sometimes, though, pain can actually follow a memory pattern especially during emotional times.
Feb 24, 2013
Dr. Gary-Anthony Lawson-Boucher
Anesthesiology 23 years experience
Pain: Your past labour epidural has nothing to do with your menstrual cramps. Your epidural was one-sided because the catheter was place beyond the midline, or you have adhesions which impeded the spread of the local anaesthetic. As for menstrual cramp, that is somatic pain.
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Last updated Oct 4, 2016

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