- The skin will be cleaned and injected with an anesthetic to numb it.
- The doctor will insert a needle through the skin toward the spine.
- The doctor will use a machine that produces live X-ray video called fluoroscopy. With it, the doctor will maneuver the needle between the bones of the spine.
- Using a contrast dye, the doctor will confirm the needle is placed in the epidural space. That’s the space between the spine and the spinal cord inside it.
- When the needle is in position, the doctor will inject a solution into the epidural space. The solution contains a steroid medicine, also called corticosteroid, and usually an anesthetic medicine too.
Any patient receiving sedation must have a ride home. Patients not receiving sedation are usually able to drive. Most patients are advised to take it easy for a day or so after the procedure until the medication has a chance to work. However, most patients can perform any activity that they could perform before the procedure.