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Cervical Interlaminar Epidurals (Neck Injection)

What is a cervical interlaminar epidural injection?

This procedure is used to treat irritated or pinched nerves in the neck. Nerves in the neck called spinal nerves can become inflamed or irritated by bony spurs or herniated discs that could be pressing on them. This irritation can cause pain to travel from the spinal nerves down the arms and to certain fingers. A cervical interlaminar epidural injection can help reduce the inflammation around the spinal nerve resulting in decreased pain shooting down the arms. 

Who is a candidate for cervical interlaminar epidural injections?

Those that could benefit from cervical interlaminar injections have symptoms that include:

  • Neck pain with associated numbness and tingling going down one or both arms

  • Weakness in the arm, shoulder or fingers

  • Shooting pain down one or both arms with certain neck movements

  • Improvement of pain when lifting the arm above your head (takes pressure off the spinal nerve)

  • "Sharp", "burning" pain going down one or both arms

What conditions are these injections used for?

  • Spinal stenosis

  • Herniated or bulging disc

  • Bony spurs or arthritis

  • Degenerative disc disease

What to expect during the procedure?

This procedure is relatively painless and is done safely with the help of an x-ray machine called a c-arm. The c-arm is used to identify the region of the neck that is pressing on a particular spinal nerve. When it is identified, the skin and underlying tissue is numbed well before a thin needle is directed to that region using the x-ray machine. A combination of a numbing medicine and a powerful anti-inflammatory steroid is injected when the needle reaches its destination, allowing the medication to spread around the inflamed nerves, ultimately providing relief of the neck, shoulder, arm and/or finger pain.

For more information or to discuss an appropriate treatment plan for your neck pain with one of our specialized pain management physicians, call Saint Louis Spine and Joint Pain Specialists today.

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