After my initial epidural procedure failed to give me as much pain relief as I was hoping for, Dr Mark McFarland recommended I try a second cortisone procedure before moving to the surgical option to remove the herniated disk.
I head into to see Dr. Raj Sureja for my second cervical epidural – cue dramatic drum rolll please 🙂
I found this great Youtube video by Dr Sureja explaining the process of injecting cortisone into the spine and why this helps relieve pain:
This time, I am much less anxious about what my experience will be. Knowledge is power, right? I know that I might get dizzy or feel faint, but I also know that the epidural really doesn’t hurt and that it will be over soon.
Dr. Sureja comes in and is his usual gentle and wonderful self. He decides to do my epidural at a level below the last one, to see if this time, I get some relief from the medication.
I lay down on my stomach on the table and again, during the procedure, I being to feel faint. I hate the fact that I just get so faint whenever I am scared or feel pain. Dr. Sureja says it is the Vagus Nerve Reflex that causes this and that it happens to other people as well. Luckily, this time, I recover from my faintness very quickly and my blood pressure does not drop as low. After a short waiting period after the procedure, I am released into the care of my long-suffering in-laws, who have again volunteered to pick me up and take me home.
When I arrive home, I quickly get my ice pack and head for the bed, to lay flat and to ice the injection site. I pray that I will not get the severe headache that I got last time, so I try to lie still, watch TV and nap. After a few hours, my husband comes home from work and fixes me dinner. I am just fine to get up and eat at the table. Later that evening, I do experience some leg jitters and insomnia. However, these side-effects are nothing compared to those that I experienced after the first epidural. Hallelujah, no headache, no flushing and no other problems! The whole experience seemed to go much more smoothly, in large part, because I wasn’t so afraid and I didn’t work myself up before I went to have the injection. Now, the fun part begins…waiting to see if I feel better.
Next time…..Second Time is a Charm!