Functional Medicine* & Wellness Programs

Take or Share our Online Initial History & Patient Registration Form.  We also have convenient Printable Versions.  Call Us Today: 915-850-0900

TAKE NOW / SHARE*

Functional Medicine®

🔴 Notice: As part of our Acute Injury Treatment Practice, we now offer Functional Medicine Integrative Assessments and Treatments* within our clinical scope for chronic degenerative disorders.  Learn More* Call Us Today: 915-850-0900

Functional Medicine Explained
Categories: Neck Pain

Cervical Steroid Injections for Neck Pain El Paso, Texas

Share

Steroid injections into the cervical spine can help with radiating neck pain. Neck pain affects people all over the world. Although it is not as common as back pain, neck pain can really take a toll on a person’s quality of life and ability to work.  This comes in the form of:

  • Sleep problems
  • Radiating/Spreading pain
  • Mental health issues and more

Much like back pain neck pain can be hard to treat effectively without identifying the root cause known as the pain generator. If natural treatments like chiropractic aren’t working then injections could be the next phase.

Injections can help with:

  • Identifying the source/root cause of the pain as a diagnostic
  • Treats the pain as a therapeutic

The most commonly used are cervical epidural steroid injections, medial branch blocks (MBBs), and facet joint injections. Learn about what they are, what they treat, and the scientific research behind their risks and benefits.

Cervical Epidural Steroid

The phrase cervical epidural steroid injection:

  • Injection means that medicine is delivered through a needle.
  • Cervical means the cervical spine, which is the neck.
  • Epidural means the dura or outer layer of the soft tissue that encases the spinal cord, nerve roots, and cerebrospinal fluid. Epidural means the medicine goes into the space around the dura.

Spine specialists use image guidance with a contrast dye called fluoroscopy ensuring the medicine gets delivered to the proper area.

2 Types

The needle enters the space through a transforaminal approach or interlaminar approach. Words like epidural just refer to where the needle goes. These injections also called nerve root blocks, are performed by entering the epidural space through the opening where the nerve roots branch out. This space is known as the intervertebral foramen.

When it is called a selective nerve root block, this is for cases where multiple nerve roots are being compressed and the injection is being used in a diagnostic purpose to identify which nerve is the pain generator. The needle in an interlaminar epidural injection goes through the opening that exists between two adjacent vertebrae.

Candidates

Cervical epidural steroid injections may be appropriate for someone who has severe neck pain with:

  • Numbness
  • Weakness
  • Altered sensation in the arm, shoulder, or between the shoulder blades

Cervical epidural steroid injections are reserved as a second-line treatment for individuals that have neck pain that does not stop for more than 4 weeks despite conservative treatment like physical therapy, chiropractic, or medical pain management using NSAIDs or acetaminophen.

The source of the pain is usually what determines if injections are appropriate.

With a patient’s:

  • Past medical and surgical history
  • Pain history
  • Physical exam findings
  • Imaging Results like CT computed tomography scan, MRI magnetic resonance imaging or a nerve test like an EMG electromyography test all can help in finding the source of the pain.

If a spine specialist thinks the nerve compression was brought on by a disc herniation, spondylolisthesis or the shifting of vertebral levels, scarring, or arthritic conditions is causing the pain, then an injection may be appropriate. If the pain comes from an infection or cancer, then this treatment is unlikely to be recommended.

Potential Benefits

The effects of injections are different for everyone, because of the variables:

  • The Duration of symptoms
  • The Cause of symptoms
  • Any Additional treatment

More than 50% will have at least 50% improvement in their pain for around 4 weeks. Then there are individuals that experience relief, up to 6 months. There are no significant differences in outcomes between the transforaminal and interlaminar approaches.

Overall alleviation from the pain is enhanced/improved when the injections are combined with a full-on treatment plan that includes physical therapy/chiropractic and pain medications.

Possible Risks

Common complications associated with injections are usually minor and temporary. These are:

  • Headache/s
  • Facial flushes
  • Light Headedness
  • Rash
  • Pain increase
  • Extended Numbness

Major complications are rare, but they can happen. These include infection, paralysis, stroke, and death. However, this happens in less than 1% of individuals undergoing this treatment. These complications are thought to happen from direct spinal cord penetration of the needle, bleeding into the spinal canal, or the medicine inadvertently getting injected into the blood vessels. Surgical groups and facilities have strict guidelines to limit these complications.

This treatment is commonly used, and when done correctly can be a powerful tool in the treatment of persistent, severe neck pain. Everyone is different so if you are considering a cervical epidural spinal injection find a qualified spine specialist or consult with a chiropractor to find out if injections are necessary.


Neck Pain Treatment


NCBI Resources

Dr. Alex Jimenez

Specialties: Stopping the PAIN! We Specialize in Treating Severe Sciatica, Neck-Back Pain, Whiplash, Headaches, Knee Injuries, Sports Injuries, Dizziness, Poor Sleep, Arthritis. We use advanced proven therapies focused on optimal mobility, posture control, health Instruction, functional fitness, and structural conditioning. We use effective "Patient Focused Diet Plans", Specialized Chiropractic Techniques, Mobility-Agility Training, Cross-Fit Protocols, and the Premier "PUSH Functional Fitness System" to treat patients suffering from various injuries and health problems. Ultimately, I am here to serve my patients and community as a Chiropractor passionately restoring functional life and facilitating living through increased mobility.

Published by

Recent Posts

Sciatica Fitness and Chiropractic A Win-Win!

Because sciatica is an inflammatory condition, with the sciatic nerve specifically being the target, sciatica… Read More

October 23, 2020

Chiropractic Hip Realignment for Imbalanced Hips

The number of individuals experiencing hip along with back pain is increasing and could benefit… Read More

October 22, 2020

Understanding Inflammation & Immune Dysfunction Part 2

Inflammation is the human body’s natural response to protect itself against injury, infection, and illness.… Read More

October 22, 2020

Seasonal Affective Disorder Depression, and Back Pain

Seasonal Affective Disorder is a form of depression that has to do with the changing… Read More

October 21, 2020

Understanding Inflammation & Immune Dysfunction Part 1

Inflammation is the human body’s natural response to protect itself against injury, infection, and illness.… Read More

October 21, 2020

Sciatica or Osteonecrosis of Femoral Head? A Common Misdiagnosis

Osteonecrosis is a condition that causes the death of bone tissue from temporary or permanent… Read More

October 20, 2020
New Patient Registration
Call us Today 🔘