19 doctors weighed in:

What are some up and down of an epidural? I have a back injury and they're tryna give me one, my family is saying no from experience, no kids yet?

19 doctors weighed in
Dr. David Edsall
Anesthesiology
10 doctors agree

In brief: Epidural med/needle

Dr sampat is correct but some problems are from the needle and some from the medicine.
If steroids are not used results change. The headache chance should be < 1/300, bleeding < 1/10, 000, infection and other problems are less, ask the rate of the person doing it. There is no chance of disc damage from an epidural. Just like an I.V. Is not going to damage your hand other than a black and blue.

In brief: Epidural med/needle

Dr sampat is correct but some problems are from the needle and some from the medicine.
If steroids are not used results change. The headache chance should be < 1/300, bleeding < 1/10, 000, infection and other problems are less, ask the rate of the person doing it. There is no chance of disc damage from an epidural. Just like an I.V. Is not going to damage your hand other than a black and blue.
Dr. David Edsall
Dr. David Edsall
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1 comment
Dr. Jonathan Hyde
Dr. Edsall mentions the low risks of an epidural. I would not agree with that there is no chance of disc damage from an epidural. There is VERY MIMIMAL chance, but if infection occurs the disc is most often involved and may require corrective treatment.
Dr. Chintan Sampat
Orthopedic Surgery - Spine
6 doctors agree

In brief: See below

Here are some of the risks & benefits of a lumbar epidural steroid injection: benefits - less pain radiating into the lower extremities, potentially avoid surgery, improve pain so you can participate in physical therapy risks - small risk of infection, bleeding (needs urgent surgery), spinal fluid leak (with headaches), increased blood sugar (especially in diabetics), premature hip necrosis.

In brief: See below

Here are some of the risks & benefits of a lumbar epidural steroid injection: benefits - less pain radiating into the lower extremities, potentially avoid surgery, improve pain so you can participate in physical therapy risks - small risk of infection, bleeding (needs urgent surgery), spinal fluid leak (with headaches), increased blood sugar (especially in diabetics), premature hip necrosis.
Dr. Chintan Sampat
Dr. Chintan Sampat
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Dr. David Rosenfeld
Pain Management
4 doctors agree

In brief: Epidural for pain

An epidural steroid injection (like a labor epidural) has risks.
Those risks are however very small. The possible benefits however are great.

In brief: Epidural for pain

An epidural steroid injection (like a labor epidural) has risks.
Those risks are however very small. The possible benefits however are great.
Dr. David Rosenfeld
Dr. David Rosenfeld
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Dr. John Stork
Anesthesiology
2 doctors agree

In brief: Very safe...

Can have local soreness from the needle, while bleeding or infection in the epidural space is a more serious, but very rare complication.
If the needle is advanced too far, could puncture the dura, allowing leakage of spinal fluid, which might result in a significant persistent headache. This often requires a second epidural, called a "blood patch" to treat it. In general, epidurals are very safe.

In brief: Very safe...

Can have local soreness from the needle, while bleeding or infection in the epidural space is a more serious, but very rare complication.
If the needle is advanced too far, could puncture the dura, allowing leakage of spinal fluid, which might result in a significant persistent headache. This often requires a second epidural, called a "blood patch" to treat it. In general, epidurals are very safe.
Dr. John Stork
Dr. John Stork
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