Cervical Epidural Steroid Injection
What is CESI?
A Cervical Epidural Steroid Injections (CESI) is an injection of cortisone steroid in your Cervical spine (neck). The Spinal Cord is made up of tiny bones called Vertebrae. Between each vertebra there is a sac called the ‘Dura’ which contains the nerve roots, Cerebrospinal fluid, Spinal Cord, and nerves. There is a space around the dura called the Epidural space which the nerves in the cervical spine travel through before going down the shoulders into the arms and hands. If one of these nerves is pinched or irritated, you may feel pain along the path in your shoulder, arms, or hands. This is called cervical radiculopathy.
How does it work?
A CESI uses a steroid to reduce inflammation to the nerves and therefore ease pain. The doctor will use X-ray guidance called Fluoroscopy to position the needle in the Epidural Space. Once the needle is positioned, the doctor will inject a cortisone steroid solution.
How long does the effect last?
The relief felt from this procedure varies greatly from person to person, depending on the root cause of the pain. Some may feel no relief and others may feel permanent pain relief. Generally, 3-6 months of pain relief has been experienced by the patients. Another important thing to note is that CESIs can be done up to three times, every six months.