Caudal Epidural Steroid Injection

A lumbar caudal epidural steroid injection is a basic procedure for dealing with low back and leg pain. This details sheet will explain what it is.

A lumbar caudal epidural steroid injection is a basic procedure for dealing with low back and leg pain. This details sheet will explain what it is.

What Is a Caudal Injection?

A caudal injection is an injection into the lowest portion of the epidural area. A caudal steroid injection can help in reducing lower back and leg pain brought on by sciatica, herniated discs, bone stimulates or other back problems.

You have nerves that range from your spine out to your back and legs. When one of those nerve “roots” (completion closest to your spine) gets irritated and swollen due to a damaged disc or other condition, it can trigger back or leg pain.

Steroid medication can help reduce the inflammation and ease the pain. It’s injected into your back, into the area between the membrane that contains the spinal fluid (the dura) and the thickest ligament in between your vertebra. The caudal canal is below the lower end of the spinal cord.

How Is a Caudal Injection Performed?

First, you will push your abdominal area on an x-ray table. Then, an intravenous medication to assist you to unwind will be administered.

The physician will numb an area of skin on your lower back, just above your buttocks, with an anesthetic. Then, guided by an x-ray, she or he will:

  1. Insert a thin needle into your end, just above your tailbone
  2. Inject color to confirm that medication is administered into the caudal area
  3. Inject a mixture of anesthetic (for temporary pain relief) and steroid (for longer-term relief).

The medicines then spread in the epidural and caudal areas, consequently hopefully decreasing nerve inflammation and pain.

Usually, the procedure takes less than 15 minutes, and you can go home the same day.

How Effective Is a Caudal Injection?

Some patients report pain relief within 30 minutes after the injection; however, pain might return a few hours later as the local anesthetic diminishes. Longer-term relief usually begins in two to three days, as soon as the steroid starts to work.

The length of time the pain relief lasts is different for each patient. For some, the relief lasts many months or longer. If the treatment works for you, you can have periodic injections to stay pain-free.

Possible Risks

The threat of an issue from an interlaminar epidural steroid injection is very low. Hardly ever, problems include bleeding or infection at the injection site or perhaps a headache if the dura is pierced, which is uncommon in a caudal injection.

Your medical professional will talk about with you, even more, the risks and advantages associated with this procedure, as well as other treatment alternatives.

These impacts fix within a couple of hours.

After the Procedure

Do not drive or do any extensive activity for 24 hr after your caudal injection. Take it easy. You can go back to your normal activities the next day.

You can continue your regular diet and medications right away.

It might take up to a week for the steroid to start working. If you don’t feel much better within 10-14 days, see your medical professional for additional assessment and to talk about various treatment options.

Is Caudal Injection Good for You?

A caudal injection may be right for you if your back pain has lasted longer than four weeks, is severe, or has not enhanced with other treatments, such as physical therapy.


Last modified: December 11, 2018

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