If you are suffering from sciatica, lower back-related leg pain or neck-related arm pain, an epidural steroid injection (ESI) might be just the right pain management approach for you.
NTTC offers a cash price of $1,050 for this pain relief procedure. This includes physician fees, facility fees, and anesthesia. That means if you have no insurance, or you have a high deductible, we offer a better solution. Concerned about payment? Call us to discuss other payment options.
What are the causes?
Inflamed spinal nerves due to the narrowing of the passage where the nerves travel trigger the types of pain listed above. Many conditions can cause this, including
- Thickening of the ligaments in the spine
- Disc herniations
- Bone spurs
- Joint cysts
- Abnormal alignment of the vertebrae (‘slipped vertebrae’, also known as spondylolisthesis).
How does the procedure work?
The epidural space is a fat-filled sleeve that surrounds the spinal sac which provides cushioning for the nerves and spinal cord. Steroids (‘cortisone’) placed into the epidural space have a very potent anti-inflammatory action that can decrease pain and lead to a better quality of life for patients. Steroids can break the cycle of pain and inflammation. They can also allow the body to compensate for the underlying condition. In this way, the injections can provide benefits that outlast the effects of the steroid itself.
Am I a candidate?
People who suffer from sciatica (pinched sciatic nerve) are great candidates for epidural steroid injections. Are you at risk for sciatica? According to the Mayo Clinic, here are five risk factors:
- Age-related changes in the spine, such as herniated disks and bone spurs, are the most common causes of sciatica.
- By increasing the stress on your spine, excess body weight can contribute to the spinal changes that trigger sciatica.
- A job that requires you to twist your back, carry heavy loads or drive a motor vehicle for long periods of time. This might play a role in sciatica, but there is no conclusive evidence of this link.
- Prolonged sitting. People who sit for prolonged periods of time or have a sedentary lifestyle are more likely to develop sciatica than active people.
- This condition, which affects the way your body uses blood sugar, increases your risk of nerve damage.
How Are Back Pain Injections Performed?
An epidural steroid injection takes between 15 and 30 minutes and is a standard procedure:
The patient lies belly-down on an X-ray table, or with a small pillow under his or her stomach to curve the back. He or she will be allowed to sit up or lie on their side in a curled position if the first position is painful.
The skin in the lower back area is cleaned and then numbed with a local anesthetic, similar to what a dentist uses. Guided by a live X-ray, the doctor inserts a needle into the skin, directed toward the epidural space in the back.
Once the needle is in the proper position, the doctor will very slowly inject the epidural steroid solution. Although the injection is slow, most patients sense some pressure due to the amount of the solution used. The pressure of the injection is generally not painful.
Following the injection, the staff will monitor the patient for 15 to 20 minutes before being discharged home.
The procedure will work within 1-3 days but could take up to a week. The benefits can last from several days to a few months. If you get a significant benefit, the injections can be repeated to maintain the improvements. Injections are also commonly coupled with other treatments (medications, physical therapy, etc.) to either maximize the benefit or prolong the effects. Most patients do not need over three epidural steroid injections in any six-month period.
Are you suffering from pain in your neck, arms, lower back or legs? Learn more about our flat-rate Epidural Steroid Injections here.