Pre-spinal Injection Procedure Instructions
Spinal injection procedures cannot be performed if you are pregnant, have a bleeding disorder, uncontrolled diabetes or uncontrolled congestive heart failure, an active systemic infection or skin infection near the involved area. If you are taking any adult aspirin or blood thinners, they must be stopped 5 to 7 days prior to a spinal injection procedure. You may continue all other medications as prescribed. If you are allergic to iodine, anesthetic agents or steroids please inform the staff when making your appointment.
We strongly advise against driving on the day of your procedure. Sometimes transient upper or lower extremity numbness can occur following a spinal injection procedure making it unsafe to drive. You may return to work on the day of your procedure provided that your occupation does not require you to drive or operate heavy equipment. Local anesthesia is administered for almost all spinal injection procedures. On occasion certain procedures will require conscious (light) sedation in addition to local anesthesia.
If you are having a procedure that requires conscious sedation, it is advised that you:
Take the day off from work.
Have someone escort you home.
Do not eat or drink non-clear liquids past midnight.
Most spinal injections take only 5 to 10 minutes to perform. All spinal injection procedures that are done in our office are performed using state-of-the-art fluoroscopy (x-ray guidance). Minor side effects from injected corticosteroids may include temporary stomach upset, insomnia, hot flash type symptoms, irritability and menstrual cycle irregularities. Minor complications may include temporary arm or leg weakness, soreness at the injection site, the temporary increase in symptoms and spinal headache. Extremely rare complications can occur including infection, prolonged bleeding, allergic reaction and paralysis. Dr. Carter has an excellent safety record and has not experienced any serious complications with any of her patient’s thus far. Success rates can vary depending on one’s spinal condition and lifestyle.
For more information on specific procedures, please see information listed under patient education.