Anyone tried nerve block injections of lidocaine and steroids?

Messages
706
Likes
1,257
Location
Israel
Has anyone done injections of steroids and mixed with lidocaine?
They have offered me them for back pain.
They don't recognize ME where I live, so they have diagnosed "fibromyalgia" and given me an option to have this in a pain clinic.
I am in pain due to a herniated disk in lower back and pain in upper back, possibly due to lying down a lot for years.
They have offered me these injections but I am scared. Has anyone done them ? and do they help?

Even a temporary help for pain would be great in helping me sleep better. But am scared.
I know these types of injections are standard for chronic back pain around the world
 

Jyoti

Moderator
Messages
3,202
Likes
8,972
I just had one, @Insomniac. No lidocaine in mine--just a steroid. But yeah...low back structural collapse and what I was told, rather briskly, was that it was my only option at this point. I was not sure at all, but after doing a bunch of reading, decided to give one injection a go.

Most of the studies I read found that there was little actual improvement from these procedures, that NSAIDS in high dosages worked as well. My neurologist poo-pooed them, saying that the American Neurological Association had put out a statement suggesting that they are not efficacious. The one thing that seemed interesting, other than the possibility it would relieve pain, is that they are used as diagnostics. If a particular nerve ending/part of your anatomy is injected, a positive response suggests that that is what is causing your pain. For me, there is enough disarray that I thought it would be worth a go if only to see if the identified culprit was what we think it is.

Had it on Wednesday, so I am a little more than 48 hours out now. I can report: the procedure was fine. No issues for me. The steroid seems to have flared POTS, which really isn't all that surprising now that I think about it. Also, for the first time in a decade, I have enjoyed two weeks of incredible blissful almost normal sleep. That ended right after the injection. Hopefully I will find a way to get it back, but knowing that sleep does not come easily for you, I thought it was worth mentioning. That is a particular kind of torture we all want to do our best to avoid.

Pain is very slightly diminished. Obviously I don't know how much pain you are in, but mine ranged from manageable to ... not. Right now, it is in the manageable arena, but it hurts. I was informed that for some people the effects continue to increase over the course of up to 10 days, so I am not ready to make a final call on this, but ....

I know someone who absolutely swears by this method of pain relief and has been doing it for 25 years about 3 times a year. She says she goes in bent over and unable to walk without excruciating pain and comes out ready for a five hour walk. Not me, but we are all different.

Do you have an injection scheduled? I can update as the next week passes. At least if there is anything definitively better or worse. Wishing you good luck with trying to decide. If I can put my hands on those papers, I will send them to you.
 

lenora

Senior Member
Messages
3,633
Likes
6,270
Hello everyone.....@Jyoti, I wonder why the lidocaine wasn't also used? True, steroids reduce swelling but it has been my understanding that lidocaine can strengthen the effect.

I have pain b/c of many different problems. I've rather given up on outside help. I use my Ace ice packs right over my spinal column....well, everywhere if needed. The pain is reduced (numbed) and I then use a spray containing 4% lidocaine in it....or something like Aspercream (?) Spray. (4% is the highest in the U.S.). That often holds the pain or changes the pattern of it for days at a time. Oh, I do use a muscle relaxant like robaxin, prescribed by my neuro.

I've been on heavy duty pain reliever and, like so many of us, found my own direction and followed it. Apart from lyrica, I don't take anything that helps with the pain aspect, whereas there was a time when I did....to not much avail. (Lyrica and its family do cut down on the pain signals we receive). We're all different. I've found that a heating pad makes my pain worse; others find relief. The heating pad will help with abdominal pain, but that's it (for me).

I'm sure that what works for one person doesn't necessarily for another. Experimentation is best. Yours, Lenora.