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iSpine Discuss Starting to get bad headache after steroid injection yesterday. Is this normal? in the Main forums forums; Hi guys, I had my cervical steroid injection yesterday morning (around C7-T1) and I am really starting to get ...

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Old 04-23-2009, 02:17 PM
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Default Starting to get bad headache after steroid injection yesterday. Is this normal?

Hi guys,

I had my cervical steroid injection yesterday morning (around C7-T1) and I am really starting to get a pretty massive headache this morning. I have never had this kind of reaction before. Is this normal? I took a couple of aleve, but it doesn't seem to be slowing it down. My head kind of feels like it is going to explode. Maybe I should call the doctor's office?? I was fairly active yesterday, instead of taking it easy. Oh, brother. Maybe I am paying big time. I have an appt. this morning unrelated to health issues, but I'm thinking I probably need to reschedule it, the way I'm feeling right now. Anyone know how long this lasts, or again, is this a possible side effect?

thx,

Cindylou
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bicycle accident 6/01: 2 compression fractures @ T12-L1; vertibroplasty; 4/06: right hip labral tear & arthroscopic repair; 4/07: lumbar prodiscs @ 3 levels, L3-6 by Dr. Bertagnoli; 7/02/08: ALIF L6-S1; 7/30/08: reopened to remove bone cement, leaked onto S1 nerve root; 8/08: pulmonary embolism, double pneumonia, collapsed left lung, pleurisy, pleural effusion; ALIF fusion complete; 3/10/09: SI Joint Fusion by Dr. Stark; Jury still out.
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Old 04-23-2009, 03:27 PM
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Exclamation

IMHO,

CyndyLou, you may have a CSF leak which is causing your headache.
It is kind of what happens when people have myleograms and get a blazing headache.
Call your doctor and tell him/her about your headache.
You know if you do have a leak, you can get a bloodpatch from your doctor to seal the leak.
So CALL THE DOC, and don't suffer needlessly.
Usually, a leak can happen when the dura (covering) of the spinal cord is nicked.
It should improve when you lay down if that is what you have. Check your post injection instructions because mine for my epidurals had the info about what to do if I developed a headache.

Keep well,

Runner
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Old 04-23-2009, 04:38 PM
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Thanks runner. I did call doc's office and talked to a nurse. She didn't think it was a spinal tap headache. How would she know?? But she just told me to take something stronger than the aleve and to lay down. I did take 2 Vicodin, but am not getting the relief I had hoped for. I've put ice around my head and neck which at least distracts me from the headache. Maybe I'll try a muscle relaxant. See if that does anything. Will keep you posted.

Thanks,

Cindylou
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bicycle accident 6/01: 2 compression fractures @ T12-L1; vertibroplasty; 4/06: right hip labral tear & arthroscopic repair; 4/07: lumbar prodiscs @ 3 levels, L3-6 by Dr. Bertagnoli; 7/02/08: ALIF L6-S1; 7/30/08: reopened to remove bone cement, leaked onto S1 nerve root; 8/08: pulmonary embolism, double pneumonia, collapsed left lung, pleurisy, pleural effusion; ALIF fusion complete; 3/10/09: SI Joint Fusion by Dr. Stark; Jury still out.
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Old 04-23-2009, 04:50 PM
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CL,

CALL AGAIN!!!!! Why should you suffer for days because of what the nurse thinks. Tell her 2 Vs didn't work, even with the ice. I have a few more ideas of what you should say but I'll let your imagination take it from here.

This makes me very angry. We go to the doctor to alleviate our pain and suffering only to have them make it worse because due dilligence wasn't observed. Shame on them. (OK, that I can print)
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Old 04-23-2009, 06:39 PM
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Default go to

If this headache continues to feel worse and you are getting nauseated and/or cannot stand, sit or be upright or have your head in a non elevated position and no meds you take are helping to alleviate the headache get yourself to an Emergency room if you cannot get to speak with the doctor.
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Old 04-23-2009, 06:48 PM
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CindyLou,

I do hope you feel better. I would try to contact the office again, as your symptoms should be discussed with a physician in the clinic.

Please keep us posted CL.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dshobbies View Post
CL,

CALL AGAIN!!!!! Why should you suffer for days because of what the nurse thinks. Tell her 2 Vs didn't work, even with the ice. I have a few more ideas of what you should say but I'll let your imagination take it from here.

This makes me very angry. We go to the doctor to alleviate our pain and suffering only to have them make it worse because due dilligence wasn't observed. Shame on them. (OK, that I can print)
Dale, I understand your anger and frequent posts about how medicine fails people or has not followed its "first, do no harm" mantra. I had a well-thought out reply typed out, but nevermind...I hope you are well.
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1994 Football Injury
1997 Snow Skiing Injury
Laminotomy L4/L5 (3.7.97--17 years old)
1999 & 2003 MVA (not at fault both times)
Grade V Tears L4/L5 & L5/L6
2-Level ProDisc® L4/L5 & L5/L6* *lumbosacral transitional vertebra (11.15.03--23 years old)
Dr. Rudolf Bertagnoli -- dr-bertagnoli.com
Pain-free for the last 4.5 yrs.
5.14.09 DSS with Dr. B.
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Old 04-23-2009, 06:54 PM
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Uh-huh, ok, I'll call again. I'm afraid they will just tell me to get to an ER, and I don't think I can drive right now. Is there anything else I need to be concerned about medically?

thx
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bicycle accident 6/01: 2 compression fractures @ T12-L1; vertibroplasty; 4/06: right hip labral tear & arthroscopic repair; 4/07: lumbar prodiscs @ 3 levels, L3-6 by Dr. Bertagnoli; 7/02/08: ALIF L6-S1; 7/30/08: reopened to remove bone cement, leaked onto S1 nerve root; 8/08: pulmonary embolism, double pneumonia, collapsed left lung, pleurisy, pleural effusion; ALIF fusion complete; 3/10/09: SI Joint Fusion by Dr. Stark; Jury still out.
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Old 04-23-2009, 07:14 PM
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Call the doc.
Ask the "nurse" to speak to the doctor while you are on the phone.
This sounds like one of those headaches and I don't want you to lay there with this terrible headache.
As for ER, get someone to drive you or if it gets awful call 911. An awful headache that persists, should be investigated to make sure it is just a headache and not something else.
See Mary, Mary's post how she got a headache after ESI.
Just my humble opinion, but I get fed up with people who probably are not even RNs telling you how you feel. She is not in your body.

K
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Old 04-23-2009, 07:19 PM
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Ok, so I didn't get to talk to my doctor who performed this yesterday because he took off for vacation, but I did get to speak to a nurse practioner. She asked about the laying down and I told her it really wasn't helping. that led her to think it wasn't a spinal leak, as it should have dimished with the laying down. But she thinks I need to get to the ER and be evaluated. Ah, crap, I hate the ER. I know I can't drive myself, so now I have to try and get ahold of a friend or family member. I'm gonna run (probably already have) out of brownie points with my friends. More likely am gonna run out of friends altogether. The NP thinks that the injection just possibly really irritated the nerve that has been causing the pain to befgin with. I'll keep you posted.
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bicycle accident 6/01: 2 compression fractures @ T12-L1; vertibroplasty; 4/06: right hip labral tear & arthroscopic repair; 4/07: lumbar prodiscs @ 3 levels, L3-6 by Dr. Bertagnoli; 7/02/08: ALIF L6-S1; 7/30/08: reopened to remove bone cement, leaked onto S1 nerve root; 8/08: pulmonary embolism, double pneumonia, collapsed left lung, pleurisy, pleural effusion; ALIF fusion complete; 3/10/09: SI Joint Fusion by Dr. Stark; Jury still out.
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Old 04-23-2009, 07:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cindylou View Post
Uh-huh, ok, I'll call again. I'm afraid they will just tell me to get to an ER, and I don't think I can drive right now. Is there anything else I need to be concerned about medically?

thx
Not medical advice...but if you have any issues with your eye sight, gait or with speech call an ambulance.

Like Runner said, do not drive yourself--call for an ambulance or a friend to take you to the ER if you feel like you should.
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1994 Football Injury
1997 Snow Skiing Injury
Laminotomy L4/L5 (3.7.97--17 years old)
1999 & 2003 MVA (not at fault both times)
Grade V Tears L4/L5 & L5/L6
2-Level ProDisc® L4/L5 & L5/L6* *lumbosacral transitional vertebra (11.15.03--23 years old)
Dr. Rudolf Bertagnoli -- dr-bertagnoli.com
Pain-free for the last 4.5 yrs.
5.14.09 DSS with Dr. B.
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Old 04-23-2009, 07:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cindylou View Post
Ok, so I didn't get to talk to my doctor who performed this yesterday because he took off for vacation, but I did get to speak to a nurse practioner. She asked about the laying down and I told her it really wasn't helping. that led her to think it wasn't a spinal leak, as it should have dimished with the laying down. But she thinks I need to get to the ER and be evaluated. Ah, crap, I hate the ER. I know I can't drive myself, so now I have to try and get ahold of a friend or family member. I'm gonna run (probably already have) out of brownie points with my friends. More likely am gonna run out of friends altogether. The NP thinks that the injection just possibly really irritated the nerve that has been causing the pain to befgin with. I'll keep you posted.
This is what I was thinking...hopefully, it is just referred pain. It is best to be evaluated though. Good luck and I wish you well CL.
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-Justin
1994 Football Injury
1997 Snow Skiing Injury
Laminotomy L4/L5 (3.7.97--17 years old)
1999 & 2003 MVA (not at fault both times)
Grade V Tears L4/L5 & L5/L6
2-Level ProDisc® L4/L5 & L5/L6* *lumbosacral transitional vertebra (11.15.03--23 years old)
Dr. Rudolf Bertagnoli -- dr-bertagnoli.com
Pain-free for the last 4.5 yrs.
5.14.09 DSS with Dr. B.
I'm here to help. Only checking PMs currently.
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Old 04-23-2009, 07:51 PM
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Ok, thanx Justin. I called my son so he is on his way over. I'm sweating profusely, probably because I'm nervous. I'll report back after this bump.
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bicycle accident 6/01: 2 compression fractures @ T12-L1; vertibroplasty; 4/06: right hip labral tear & arthroscopic repair; 4/07: lumbar prodiscs @ 3 levels, L3-6 by Dr. Bertagnoli; 7/02/08: ALIF L6-S1; 7/30/08: reopened to remove bone cement, leaked onto S1 nerve root; 8/08: pulmonary embolism, double pneumonia, collapsed left lung, pleurisy, pleural effusion; ALIF fusion complete; 3/10/09: SI Joint Fusion by Dr. Stark; Jury still out.
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Old 04-23-2009, 07:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cindylou View Post
Ok, thanx Justin. I called my son so he is on his way over. I'm sweating profusely, probably because I'm nervous. I'll report back after this bump.
Good deal. Don't be nervous...everything will be fine.

-J
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-Justin
1994 Football Injury
1997 Snow Skiing Injury
Laminotomy L4/L5 (3.7.97--17 years old)
1999 & 2003 MVA (not at fault both times)
Grade V Tears L4/L5 & L5/L6
2-Level ProDisc® L4/L5 & L5/L6* *lumbosacral transitional vertebra (11.15.03--23 years old)
Dr. Rudolf Bertagnoli -- dr-bertagnoli.com
Pain-free for the last 4.5 yrs.
5.14.09 DSS with Dr. B.
I'm here to help. Only checking PMs currently.
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Old 04-23-2009, 08:23 PM
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Hope things are fine, CyndyLou,

You find out your true friends when they help you out and will do it again, in a heartbeat, because they are your friends.
Well, she was an RN, but she still is not in your body.
I second Justin, however this is not a medical opinion, but do not drive yourself. Going to the ER for a severe headache, is ok.

R
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Old 04-23-2009, 08:51 PM
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CL, I hope you don't have a terrible time at the ER, and that they are able to help you right away.

I'm glad your son is coming to drive you. Please try to remain calm, you will be all right. Let us know how it goes, when you are feeling better.
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46 years old. 12-15 years of intermittent pain, 2 years with constant pain.

DDD, L4-5 and L5-S1, pain confirmed by discogram.
PT, ESI's, Facet injection and block, Acupuncture - all no help.

2-level (Prodisc-L) ADR surgery with Dr. Bertagnoli, May 26, 2009.

Currently taking Opana-ER (tapering off) and oxycodone
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Old 04-24-2009, 01:26 AM
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Any word on the outcome of CindyLou?

I hope this is nothing that cannot be cured, with a little extra medication, on a temporary basis.

Be well CindyLou.

Terry Newton
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1988 ruptured SI-L5
1990 ruptured C5-C6
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Old 04-24-2009, 03:21 AM
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Default Just got home from the ER

Hi everyone,

Well, we finally got home from the ER. They had to hook me up to an IV and give me some morphine and ativan to finally break the pain pattern. Then the ER doc (who was terrific by the way) thought it best to do a brain Cat Scan, as he wanted to check for an aneurism, any bleeding on the brain. Fortunately, that came back ok. He said it's not 100% accurate, but still a good diagnostic test. That morphine is a complete miracle drug. They had to give me two rounds, and then we all concluded it was very likely that the injection irritated the nerve big time, and then it snowballed into spasming, etc. He discharged me with something stronger than Vicodin, but not a stupid large script of it. And he wants me to call my neck doctor's office tomorrow morning, and be seen by my GP within 3 days.

How about a little UN-excitement for a bit, no?

Thanks again everyone, for all the good advice,

Cindylou
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bicycle accident 6/01: 2 compression fractures @ T12-L1; vertibroplasty; 4/06: right hip labral tear & arthroscopic repair; 4/07: lumbar prodiscs @ 3 levels, L3-6 by Dr. Bertagnoli; 7/02/08: ALIF L6-S1; 7/30/08: reopened to remove bone cement, leaked onto S1 nerve root; 8/08: pulmonary embolism, double pneumonia, collapsed left lung, pleurisy, pleural effusion; ALIF fusion complete; 3/10/09: SI Joint Fusion by Dr. Stark; Jury still out.
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Old 04-24-2009, 03:33 AM
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Glad to hear that you got checked out and there is nohing really bad. Its better to be safe then sorry. The ativan is great stuff. I would have needed that too.
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Old 04-24-2009, 03:36 AM
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Default reason to go to ER

I'm editing this as I see you went to the ER! Good going..sorry you had to go thru that but glad it wasn't a CSF leak!
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Old 04-24-2009, 04:11 AM
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CL!!

GLAD to read that you are ok and that it wasn't anything too serious.

Hope you start to feel better SOON!!

All the best,
Mary
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Old 04-24-2009, 02:00 PM
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CL, thanks for the update and great news. I figured they would probably want to do a CT to r/o an aneurysm. By the way, there really is nothing like a morphine drip...a great drug indeed.

I hope the intervention yesterday was able to break up pain pattern and you are feeling much better today.
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1994 Football Injury
1997 Snow Skiing Injury
Laminotomy L4/L5 (3.7.97--17 years old)
1999 & 2003 MVA (not at fault both times)
Grade V Tears L4/L5 & L5/L6
2-Level ProDisc® L4/L5 & L5/L6* *lumbosacral transitional vertebra (11.15.03--23 years old)
Dr. Rudolf Bertagnoli -- dr-bertagnoli.com
Pain-free for the last 4.5 yrs.
5.14.09 DSS with Dr. B.
I'm here to help. Only checking PMs currently.
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Old 04-24-2009, 04:13 PM
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CL,
I am so glad that you are okay. That was very scary, I was worried about you. Too many medical problems for one person, I hope this is the last.
Phylly
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Old 04-24-2009, 05:24 PM
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CL,

Though I think the thought of an IV would have scared any headache away (I so hate those things), I hope this broke up the spasms and you're feeling much better. Who ever said an exciting life was better? Please let us know how you're doing.

Dale
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