What are transforaminal injections used for?
The long-term steroid that’s injected into the patient works to diminish the swelling and inflammation of spinal nerve roots as well as other key tissues that surround the spinal nerve root. In turn, this may alleviate pain, numbness, and tingling in addition to other symptoms produced by such swelling, irritation, and inflammation. Furthermore, transforaminal injections are often used to determine a particular spinal nerve root level that could be the culprit behind the patient’s pain.
What to expect from transforaminal injections
A transforaminal injection includes injecting a needle through your skin and down into your deeper tissues underneath. Although you may experience a bit of pain, the doctor can numb both the deeper tissues and surrounding skin using a local anesthetic with a super thin needle prior to inserting the needle itself. Once the area is completely numb, the injection needle is inserted and typically feels more like pressure rather than actual pinching, without any sharp pain. For some patients, they choose intravenous sedation over a local anesthetic that makes the process much easier for them to endure. A number of patients undergo the injection without anything and do quite well overall.
Immediately following the transforaminal injection, your leg or arm may feel numb or slightly heavy, depending on the actual location of the injection and the amount of local anesthetic used. Nevertheless, regardless of the numb feeling, the majority of patients can still move their leg or arm just fine. This odd side effect stems from the concentration used rather than the amount of the local anesthetic itself. Also, many patients readily notice that their level of pain is significantly less or even gone. This instantaneous effect is also because of the injection of local anesthetic and will likely only last a couple of hours at most. You may experience some aching or soreness for a few days due to the needle insertion along with the initial irritation of the injected medications. Starting around the third day, expect to begin noticing substantial pain relief.
V. K. Puppala, M.D. cares for all his patients with empathy, kindness, and respect in the Metro Atlanta, Georgia area. Dr. Puppala takes a very unique and different approach to effective pain management by implementing a number of minimally invasive pain interventional methods by means of useful restoration and effective overall pain medication management. Call 770-627-7246 or 770-MAP-PAIN today to set up an appointment.