• miss39702 miss39702
    October 22, 2009
    Help! Nerve Damage from Epidural shots? Cervival
    miss39702 miss39702
    October 22, 2009

    I will try to limit this, but has anyone had a epidural? The doctor who did mine hit a nerve, causing numbness and pain.

    I broke my wrist three years ago, and after four failed surgeries, I finally had a total wrist fusion Nov 2008 and carpel tunnel release after nerve conduction test showed severe damage to nerves in wrist and also cervical nerve damage. I had been dealing with back and neck pain for many years, I have cervical spinal stenosis,osteoporosis, DDD,  arthritis, and bulging discs at all levels. At the same time as the last wrist surgery, I had three epidural shots in the cervical area. They seemed to help some, so I went last week to begin another round. As my pain management doctor inserted the needle, it obviously hit a nerve -- my arm (injured arm) flew up in the air and I screamed in pain. He got me quiet and tried again, then hit the same spot. He apologized, but he really didnt explain what happened except to say that is the reason you must be awake during the procedure. He showed me the screen, saying he got the area he wanted. Now my arm, hand, and wrist feels worse than it did before I had the fusion and carpel tunnel surgery.

    I am supposed to go on 29th to get another shot, but I am not sure if I will now. I like this doctor and I'm sure he will tell me what happened, but I can't do that again. It was terrible! My orthopedic doctor is five hours away and I can't go right now, but I am worried that this pain I'm in could be permanent. My hand feels like it is in an electrical socket!

    Does anybody have any idea what to do or experience with this? I know carpel tunnel surgery sometimes has to be redone, and I still had some numbness in the area before this shot, but the pain is terrible now! Please help!



This question has not been answered by one of our experts yet.


  • Bonnie Girl October 25, 2009
    Bonnie Girl
    October 25, 2009

    Wow-they had to hurt..Could your vitamin levels be way down..I didn't realzie how bad a low B6 was until I had to have a minimal invasive surgery and by the time the doc was done I was almost threatening her to make her stop..She also hit an area that made me cry out..I am not someone who cries alot and I have a fairly high pain threshold..She and I both were in shock in how much pain it caused..Thankfully labs were drawn and my B6 was at a 17 and it is suppose to be in the 70's I think it was she said..I was extrmemely low with the B6 and this helped her to understand..Plus if you have other illness going on such as Fibromyalgia then you will hurt more than the norm..

    Have some labs drawn to see how you are doing and let doc know you are researching as well..Let doc know your fear..I wish you only the best and hope you get quick anwsers..

    • miss39702
      October 25, 2009
      October 25, 2009

      Bonnie, Thanks, they may be part of it. I havent had a good exam in two years. I have been focusing on the bone issues so much. It could very well be a factor. I need to be tested for Fibro, I certainly have alot of the symptoms (my sister  and MIL have it so I am familir with it) I have had a really tough 3 years, lost two sisters, both in their forties last year, within 9 month of each other, and during this time my mother was diagnosed with colon cancer and my husband left me) My mom's in remission now, but broke both hips last month and I let my husband back which has been an ordeal in itself! I am  taking online classes and am beginning the process for disability, which I know will be aother stress in my life, but I don't know what else to do. I never sleep and am underweight so Im sure my levels are all messed up. I am planning on seeing my pcp asap and get a good exam. My PM and ortho DRs, don't seem to want to look at the "whole picture" and just deal with the issues of myback and arm/wrist. Thanks again

    • Bonnie Girl
      October 25, 2009
      Bonnie Girl
      October 25, 2009

      Hi..I understand..In 4 years I lost my mom to Autoimmune cirrohsis of the liver, my brother had a massive heart attack and died, my sister had a brain tumor in the meningies and is holding her own, my dad fell and broke his hip, my son and his wife broke up and my grandson has had an awful time of it, I had to have emergent gallbladder surgery only after they got 24 hr antibiotics in me, then thyroidectomy due to a tumor-thankfully not cancersous but was showing hot when removed, then had to have the neck surgery.. It seems there is always something going on that we neglect ourselves and suffer greatly because of it..My thyroid has caused me to gain weight-I  had a lap band put in 2 years ago but the autoimmune kicked in and caused it to begin eroding into my stomach so all i was doing was throwing up-it was removed..Now I had this recent fall and my whole body is in a major what the heck is going on pain overdrive..I thought my neck surgery may have been messed up but doc said didn't think so but there is alot of swelling and arhtirtis will recheck me in 3 weeks if can hang on that long..Thankfully I can type without looking at the keyboard...Bending head down is awfull..I don't sleep much like you..I get a little here and there..It has become a major factor this year in that times at work I feel myself kinda blacking out and jerking awake..Never happens when there is movement like driving ..

       I hope all goes well with your mom..

      I hope your online classes make your stress less-just knowing you are doing something for you..

      I hope you will be able to deal with your husband one way or another so you can move forward..

      I think doctors are overwhelemed when anyone with chronic pain comes to them..If tests don't reveal alot they think it is all in the head..The overall picture is what is needed, not lets look here then look there do it all now and take it all in-please...

      Sorry I can go on and on when it deals with this..I am tired of being tired,pain and making excuses..Hope you get in with your doc soon--two years too long for a physical..God Bless honey..

  • Amy Tudor July 29, 2014
    Amy Tudor
    July 29, 2014

    Hi miss39702 -


    I know this is a very old question, and I'm sorry it's taken so much time for someone from our staff to respond to it. I hope this problem is long passed by now, but I did want to respond to your question. According to this site (and others), worsening of symptoms and nerve damage are both possible side effects of having epidurals for pain relief. I am not a healthcare professional and can't diagnose the issue, but if I had been in the same position, I can say that I probably would not have had the next round of injections, at least not from that same doctor. Sometimes the damage is unavoidable and just a risk that comes with the procedure, but his indifference to the obvious pain the injections caused at the time would cause me concern.


    Did the pain ever resolve? Perhaps you could return and tell us all what happened. Your experiences might be invaluable to someone else facing the same situation.


    Here are some links that might be useful, in any case:


    Why Yoga Can Help Soothe Many Types of Chronic Pain

    What Can Be Done for Nerve Pain?

    Cooking to Control Pain


    Be well!




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