Transforaminal epidural injections use the conventional epidural approach. Using X-ray and contrast dye for guidance, the physician uses a thing needle to inject a mixture of local anesthetic and long acting steroid into a specific area of the epidural space known as the foramen, which refers to the opening in between the vertebrae and at the side of the spine where a nerve root exits. Epidural steroid injections are typically performed without sedation, however, it can be administered for patient anxiety and comfort. The procedure takes about 30 minutes and may need to be repeated depending on the patient's response to the medication.
Lying in bed on your back without a pillow is one way to relieve the pressure on the nerve. While the relief isn’t always instant, the reduced pressure may help the swelling of the nerve go down and then slip back into proper placement.
Other treatments may involve physical or occupational therapy. Pain relief treatments can help you deal with that pain while waiting for the nerve to not longer be compressed through natural healing or by other treatments your doctor prescribes. One method that has had great results for patients seeking relief is the cervical transforminal epidural steroid injection.