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Doctor insights on: Where In The Vertebral Column Is A Lumbar Puncture Generally Done

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Exactly where in the vertebral column is a lumbar puncture generally done?

Exactly where in the vertebral column is a lumbar puncture generally done?

In the canal: A lumbar puncture is typically used to get cerebrospinal fluid from the spinal canal. It includes a needle inserted in the back between the spinous processes and lamina of the spine and then through the dura - which is the blood brain barrier around the nerves. Generally, the puncture is performed around the l4-5 levels. ...Read more

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Dr. Gary Sandler
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Lumbar (Definition)

The lumbar part of the spine is the low back. It is made up of five bones (most of the time) stacked one on top of the other. They are connected by disks, facet joints, and ligaments. These soft parts allow for movement controlled by the spinal muscles; the muscles can also keep it stiff when need be. The lumbar spine also contains and protects nerves to ...Read more


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I have lower back pain 2 inches away from vertebral column.It is like a toothache pain.With the X-ray no herinated disk found.Could it be fibromyalgia

I have lower back pain 2 inches away from vertebral column.It is like a toothache pain.With the X-ray no herinated disk found.Could it be fibromyalgia

It could be a number: Of things including a disc problem realizing that an x-ray does not reveal a disc problem which is best evaluated by MRI or ct. The psi could be muscular, arthritic, disc related or even non spine related like an ulcer or kidney stone. If it persists or worsens, see your doctor. ...Read more

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Should a lumbar puncture be done in a fused area of the back?

Should a lumbar puncture be done in a fused area of the back?

More difficult: The fused area sometimes does not have as clear an anatomy ...... It will be harder to get the needle where it needs to go. If there is quite a lot of bone overlying the area, i will not be able to get him the pca. ...Read more

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Does lumbar puncture go into muscle and/or near discs? One year later and still back pain that did not have before. Wonder if procedure was done right

Does lumbar puncture go into muscle and/or near discs? One year later and still back pain that did not have before. Wonder if procedure was done right

Unusual: The pain you are experiencing is not usually associated with a lumbar puncture. It is usually limited to a couple days to a week or so. A routine lumbar puncture should not damage muscle or a disc as the needle only penetrates the midline lumbar spine deep enough to obtain a small sample of the fluid. I suggest seeing your doctor, he or she can help pinpoint the cause of your pain. ...Read more

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After spinal tap (lumbar puncture) done in january 2013, my back is still in a great amount of pain. What could this be?

Not the tap: It would be unusual for a spinal tap to cause lasting symptoms. Your pain may be related to the condition that warranted the spinal tap in the first place. ...Read more

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Today i had a lumbar puncture done but my back is absolutely hurting so much its incredible. The spinal fluid was clear by the way and the pressure was 19 but he said that was normal because of slight stress. But my back is hurting like crazy sinds the pu

Today i had a lumbar puncture done but my back is absolutely hurting so much its incredible. The spinal fluid was clear by the way and the pressure was 19 but he said that was normal because of slight stress. But my back is hurting like crazy sinds the pu

Sorry to hear that: Sometimes LP's can result in lower back pain. Your doctor should've prescribed something for your pain in case it developed. Also, you should drink plenty of fluids and be taking it easy from heavy exertional activities for a couple of days. It'll get better. But if it gets worse or something feels like it's swelling in the low back etc. you should contact the doctor right away. ...Read more

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I had a lumbar puncture done in an ER...I am now having severe spinal headache, I cant even sit up at all!! I vomit and have to lay back down. HELP?

I had a lumbar puncture done in an ER...I am now having severe spinal headache, I cant even sit up at all!! I vomit and have to lay back down. HELP?

Post-LP headache: First thing, lay down. Don't get up. Second, hydrate - water/Gatorade/Powerade. And third, caffeine and ibuprofen (per instructions)! If not better in 72-96 hours post-LP, would contact provider who performed LP for possible epidural 'blood patch.' Most post-LP headaches resolve with the above instructions. Laying down is most important. ...Read more

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I had a lumbar puncture done 4 weeks ago. I am having horrible back pain, headaches, numbness,weakness and pain in my legs and hips.

I had a lumbar puncture done 4 weeks ago.  I am having horrible back pain, headaches, numbness,weakness and pain in my legs and hips.

Need evaluation: The issues start with why you had the lumbar puncture. What were they looking for? Why was it done? Then, how long after the LP did the syndrome evolve? Changing? Do you have objective fever (actually measured fever)? Have you had a lumbar MRI scan? What did it show? Do you tend to get pain (background headaches, other pains, recurring pain problems)? Go for further evaluation. ...Read more

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Lumbar puncture done 3+ years ago & still no one can massage/press on that site + about 2-3" around it. Now right foot and calf numb+lower back pain. ?

Lumbar puncture done 3+ years ago & still no one can massage/press on that site + about 2-3" around it. Now right foot and calf numb+lower back pain. ?

2 events?: Three years later, and ow there is foot numbness? For a problem like this, it is wise to start the evaluation over, with an interview, exam, and perhaps some testing, such as a nerve conduction test. It is conceivable the local pain was from a local injury, but it should not have caused foot numbness 3 years later. ...Read more

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Whats a lumbar puncture like and why should someone lie on his or her back afterwards?

LP: A lumbar puncture is a procedure in which a physician will insert a needle into the spinal canal to collect spinal fluid. After a hole is placed into the sac which contains the fluid, fluid can leak out which can result in headache or what is referred to as a spinal headache. Lying flat after the procedure reduces the likelihood of this happening which is why patients are told to lie flat after a lumbar puncture. ...Read more

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Can a lumbar puncture cause a tear in the ligaments/muscles in back and cause ongoing pain?

Can a lumbar puncture cause a tear in the ligaments/muscles in back and cause ongoing pain?

Lumbar Puncture: This really depends on how many attempts were needed to do the tap. You may have some minor discomfort afterwards. - there really should not be major back pain at all. ...Read more

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Just got a lumbar puncture, how long should I plan to be laying down, and how long will my lower back be sore?

Should stay flat for: 1-2 hours and longer is better. It decreases the chance of post spinal headache. Low back should improve in 1-2 days. ...Read more

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I had a lumbar puncture 7 hours ago and now I'm having somewhat severe back pain and I feel foggy. Is this normal?

I had a lumbar puncture 7 hours ago and now I'm having somewhat severe back pain and I feel foggy.  Is this normal?

Any headache?: #1 adverse effect of lumbar puncture is post-procedure headache, which is treated with lying flat and drinking lots of water besides the pain meds. Back pain where the LP was done, if persistent beyond 48 hrs, may indicate infection, but more likely nerve involvement during the procedure. Mental lethargy should not happen unless you had meningitis. Was meningitis what LP was done for? ...Read more

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Would results from a lumbar puncture give any indication of lupus? My results came back negative and I wonder if lupus is still a possibility

Would results from a lumbar puncture give any indication of lupus? My results came back negative and I wonder if lupus is still a possibility

No: If testing, especially the ANA, is negative lupus is very unlikely. Spinal fluid analysis will not help. You give no specifics about your symptoms so it is impossible to comment beyond generalities. ...Read more

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Is it normal to be in pain after a failed lumbar puncture. Had one yesterday and hurts to bend over and sit down. In a lot of pain and back tender?

Sometimes: If they tried multiple times to do the lumbar puncture, but failed, it could certainly be sore. The needle is being passed through tissue and you could have a bruise or hematoma causing the pain. You need to be aware of leg pain, numbness or weakness. Should those symptoms develop, seek immediate care to rule out an epidural hematoma. ...Read more

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What happens if a lumbar puncture is done too high?

May hit cord: Doing an LP too high up in the back risks hitting the spinal cord, which can damage the cord. It is best to do an LP below the level where the actual spinal cord ends since the needle is designed to slide by nerve roots. ...Read more

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Dr. Dariush Saghafi
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Lumbar Puncture (Definition)

To test for meningitis or multiple sclerosis or a variety of problems, a small needle is inserted into the lumbosacral cistern to obtain spinal fluid for testing ...Read more