Used to treat lower back pain, an epidural is an injection of steroids and an anesthetic that is inserted directly into the epidural space of the spine. Given by anesthesiologists or trained spine care physicians, epidurals can be administered in the office or a hospital setting.
To place an epidural, your back will be numbed with medication and a separate needle will be placed deeper into the spine to reach a special location where the medication can reach the nerves. Once in position, a syringe will be attached to the needle and medication administered into the space to help control pain. The needle is then removed and you should be able to go home soon afterward.
Your doctor may do more than one epidural over the course of time using different types of medication until he or she finds one that relieves your symptoms most effectively. This treatment can help control pain for several weeks before additional treatment is needed.