Lumbar Epidural Steroid Injection

A Lumbar Epidural Steroid Injection is the most often used epidural steroid injection. It provides such significant results that it is called “White Magic”. This injection has been used since 1950 with a wealth of experience being collected.

Lumbar Epidural Steroid Injections are used to relieve low back pain and pain radiating down the legs. The steroid medication helps reduce the swelling and inflammation caused by spinal stenosis, radiculopathy, sciatica or herniated discs.

During the procedure the patient lies face down on a cushion placed under the stomach area to arch the back for easier access to the epidural space. A local anesthetic is then used to numb the skin and tissue down to the lumbar vertebra. Fluoroscopy is used to help the physician ensure correct placement of the needle tip. The physician then places a thicker needle between vertebras and uses the contrast solution to see the painful areas. Then a mixture of anesthetic and steroids is injected to reduce the pain and inflammation.
For some patients; one or two Lumbar Epidural Steroid Injection is enough to get significant paint relief, however three or more injections might be needed. The needle is removed and a small bandage is used to cover the tiny wound.


Possible side effects could be compared with common injection side effects, i.e. allergic reaction, bacterial infection, or bleeding in seldom cases. Steroid side effects are facial, eyes, arms, or legs swelling and elevated sugars for diabetic patients.

It is very important that the patient inform the physician about pregnancy or if he/she is taking blood thinning medication.