Prior to having surgery at two levels in December 2010, I underwent evaluations for pain management.
Make sure your doctor is Board Certified in Pain Management and Fluorscopy! I had 3 epidurals, a caudal block and finally a facet joint injection bilaterally at L-5-S1 (this was done between 2/2010-11/2010)
The first epidural relieved some of the lower back ache but did not relieve the stenosis symptoms. They had a problem getting into the epidural space due to scar tissue. The other injections were placed at different levels.
In addition, I have been on Tramadol since Feb 2010 and still take it for pain relief. Everyone is always worried about addiction to meds, well, I would rather be somewhat pain free, and that's a choice one must make for oneself.
Not all types of pain management works, some people benefit greatly while others do not. My decision to undergo pain management was strictly to delay surgery for as long as possible. In retrospect, I think it was the right decision, particularly since this was my third spine surgery. I was frightened and reluctant to have yet another procedure.
It seems like once you have a spine surgeon, you become a patient for life!! You just keep going "back" for more! (Not by choice)
Laminectomy 2005, Fusion L-4-5 2006, XLIF & Posterior L3-4, L5-S1 2010