Chronic pain can be frustrating to treat, even with the help of prescription medication and physical therapy. Most of the time, the relief from these treatments doesn’t last or take too long to take effect.
Fluoroscopy-guided injections are the latest advancement in pain injection therapy. This minimally invasive technique delivers almost immediate pain relief. With the help of an X-ray, It allows Dr. Sardar to accurately target the pain at its source.
In general, X-ray-guided pain injection is a safe procedure that promises fast and effective pain relief with less risk compared to traditional treatment, like surgery or medications.
At Pain Therapy Medical Care in Brooklyn, New York, Dr. Henry Sardar performs Epidural and facet joint injections. These are a type of fluoroscopic injections we commonly offer to treat persistent back pain. The technology can also treat various painful chronic conditions, including sports injuries, joint diseases, musculoskeletal disorders, and inflammatory diseases.
Read on to learn more about Fluoroscopy-Guided Injections, how it works, its efficacy, and other procedures you can combine with it for optimal results.
What Is A Fluoroscopy-Guided Injection?
A fluoroscopy-guided injection is a form of chronic pain treatment that uses fluoroscopy (X-ray guidance) to accurately and safely target the pain source. X-ray guided injections have existed as far back as 1896 and were developed shortly after discovering X-rays.
Fluoroscopy can also be used for diagnosis by visualizing and providing information about your joints or the presence of infection.
Fluoroscopy uses a high-contrast dye that enables the X-ray machine to show the precise location of the needle. As Dr. Sardar injects the dye, he can see real-time images of the deep tissue. Once he adjusts the needle placement accurately, an anti-inflammatory or anti-pain medication is injected.
X-ray pain injections are mostly used to treat back pain by targeting facet joints and painful vertebral structures (ligaments, muscles, discs, nerves, etc.). Nevertheless, guided pain treatments can also be utilized in the treatment of other joint problems.
This advanced technology removes the need for blind pain injections and the hit-or-miss approach. It’s safe and allows Dr. Sardar to accurately deliver medications to where they’ll be most effective.
The two most common types of fluoroscopy-guided injections performed at our clinic in Brooklyn, New York are:
- Epidural Corticosteroid Injections: The epidural space is a small space inside your vertebral column, just before the spinal cord. Anti-inflammatory medications can be injected into the epidural space – most commonly to treat low (lumbar) back pain. Epidural injections are a highly recommended treatment for back pain caused by nerve impingement, herniated discs, and spinal arthritis since the 1950s. It’s a minimally invasive way to effectively deal with back pain without surgery.
- Facet Joint Injections: Under-lubricated facet joints can cause chronic neck and back pain too. These joints are found between each vertebra along the neck and spine and contain synovial fluid that allows smooth movement. However, some chronic joint conditions can lead to insufficient synovial fluid, and subsequent joint friction and damage. Dr. Sardar uses facet injections to reduce pain and inflammation caused by these conditions. He directly targets the joints to suppress the pain at its origin.
- Anti-Inflammation: Pain is caused mainly by inflammation that presses against nerve endings. Steroids are potent anti-inflammatory medication that reduces inflammation, calms your nerves, and relieves pain.
- Prevents Chemical Release: Some medical conditions elicit the release of chemicals (like phospholipase A2) that can activate nerve fibers and cause chronic pain. Facet and epidural steroid injections can inhibit the production and dispensation of these chemicals.
- Nerve blocks: Corticosteroids and lidocaine can be used to block nerves transmitting pain in a specific body region. The combination injection weakens the action of the enzymes responsible for irritation and discomfort. It reduces your nerves’ ability to transmit pain signals. No pain signals, no pain.
- Herniated discs
- Spinal stenosis
- Lumbar arthritis
- Compression fractures
- Annular tears
- Bone spurs
- Lumbar pain
- Neck pain
- Sacro-iliac joint pain
- Knee pain
- Hip joint pain
- You’ve been in severe pain for several weeks (back pain, neck pain, joint pain)
- You’ve either developed a tolerance for pain medications or would like to avoid the possibility of that happening
- You want to avoid surgery to treat your pain
- You have severe pain in your facet joints (joints of your spine)
- You want to speed up your natural healing process by combining different treatments
- Are pregnant: Exposing your fetus to radiation may cause congenital problems.
- Are diabetic: The injection therapy may cause an increase in your blood sugar levels.
- Are allergic to contrast: If you have allergic reactions to iodine, latex, medications, or contrast media, kindly inform Dr. Sardar at your consultation.
- Fast pain relief: Under X-ray guidance, the injection can deliver the medication to the source of pain. This allows the therapeutic effects to act directly on the affected area, eliciting almost immediate pain relief.
- No blind aiming: Say goodbye to hit-or-miss techniques. With the help of real-time imaging, Dr. Sardar can insert the needle at the precise location with the help of the X-ray.
- Fewer risks: The fluoroscope acts as a GPS that allows Dr. Sardar to navigate the injection needle to the right spot, reducing the risk of hitting neighboring structures.
- Minimally invasive: Facet and epidural steroid injections can accelerate pain relief and healing without the need for surgery.
- Avoid oral medication: Fluoroscopy-guided injections prevent the addiction and misuse of opioid prescriptions by delivering long-lasting pain relief directly to the painful area.
- Clinically tested: Clinical studies have proven the safety and effectiveness of Fluoroscopy-Guided Injections in relieving and healing chronic pains.
- Cold laser therapy
- Shock-wave therapy
- Kinesiology taping
- Electromagnetic Transduction therapy (EMTT)
- TECAR Therapy
- Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) therapy
- Perineural Injection Therapy (PIT)
- Ultrasound-Guided Injections
- Acupuncture Therapy
- Aqua therapy
- Physical and occupational therapy
How do Fluoroscopy-Guided Injections Work?
A fluoroscopic guided injection involves the delivery of medication directly into the source of your pain. We primarily use a combination of a corticosteroid and a local anesthetic, typically lidocaine.
This mixture of steroid and numbing medication elicits therapeutic effects around the site of injection:
What Conditions Do Fluoroscopy-Guided Injections Treat?
The CDC reports that fifteen million people in the US suffer from joint pain yearly. Fluoroscopy-guided injections allow the injection to target the painful area, effectively relieving various painful chronic conditions.
At PainTherapy Medical Care, Dr. Henry Sardar frequently uses fluoroscopy-guided injections to diagnose and treat these conditions:
If your condition falls under the list mentioned above, book an appointment at our clinic in Brooklyn, New York, to see if Fluoroscopy-Guided Injections are the treatment you need.
Am I A Candidate For Fluoroscopy-Guided Injections?
Fluoroscopy-guided injections are non-operative procedures to deliver medication with maximum accuracy and minimum risks.
It has gained the attention of Dr. Sardar’s patients in New York because of its ability to treat difficult-to-reach areas like your spine, hip, and shoulder. Anyone can make use of fluoroscopic guided injections to improve their chronic conditions.
So, if you have joint pain, low-back pain, leg pain, neck pain, or a medical history of chronic pain, it’s time to give injection therapies a try. You are a great candidate for fluoroscopy-guided injections if:
If you’re suffering from any painful chronic medical condition, you can benefit from the injection of steroids, stem cells, or platelet-rich plasma—they all have a surgery-sparing benefit.
However, just like every medical treatment, there are limitations on who can avail of fluoroscopy-guided injections. Therefore, Dr. Sardar may refer you to other treatment options if you:
What Are The Benefits Of Fluoroscopy-Guided Injections?
Most patients suffering from chronic pain prefer fluoroscopy-guided injections over traditional management because it delivers long-lasting pain relief quickly.
These are some reasons Fluoroscopy-Guided Injections are becoming increasingly popular among Dr. Sardar’s patients in New York:
Dr. Sardar now offers fluoroscopy-Guided Injections in our pain clinic in Brooklyn, New York. Give us a call and set your appointment today.
How Are Fluoroscopy-Guided Injections Administered?
Since this procedure uses x-ray guided injections to ease pain, it means you’ll have to take off your jewelry or any clothing that may interfere with the radiation before you step into the procedure room.
Dr. Sardar begins by prepping the skin with a disinfectant, followed by a local anesthetic to numb the area. He then turns on the fluoroscope, an X-ray machine, to provide real-time imaging of the internal injection site. He delivers high-contrast dye that allows him to distinguish between the path of injection and the surrounding tissues as medically necessary.
Once Dr. Sardar tracks the correct position, he can now administer the mixture of steroids and anesthetics. After the injection has been fully released, he removes the needle.
The procedure time of fluoroscopy-guided injection can range between 15 and 30 minutes. Then, after a short monitoring period, you are free to go about your day.
Can Fluoroscopy-Guided Injections Be Combined With Other Procedures?
Therapeutic injection under fluoroscopic guidance is typically highly effective because it delivers the mediation straight to the site of inflammation and pain. However, we recommend the combination of different pain management techniques to achieve maximum effects.
You can combine x-ray guided injections with the other treatments available at Pain Therapy Medical Care in Brooklyn, New York.
Recovery After Fluoroscopy-Guided Injection Therapy
A fluoroscopy-guided injection is a safe and minimally invasive technique to relieve pain from chronic conditions. You can start to feel the effects after the first session. Reduced inflammation, improved range of movement, and diminished pain is some of the effects you may feel within a few hours of the injection.
You may choose to take the procedure day off to rest. Avoid any strenuous activity that may stress the treated area. You can feel your condition gradually improve every day following your treatment.
The pain relief can last as long as six months up to a year, if not longer. And you can repeat injection therapy every three months if needed. We suggest combining fluoroscopy-guided injections with other pain management options to maximize the benefits.
What Are The Complications Of Fluoroscopy-Guided Injections?
Fluoroscopic guided injections are advanced treatments for the accurate and effective delivery of medication straight to the site of injury. However, potential complications can still arise.
If you have any contraindications to fluoroscopy-guided injections, Dr. Sardar pain management doctor in Brooklyn will walk you through other viable pain treatment options suitable for your condition.
At PainTherapy Medical Care in New York, we use the latest FDA-approved equipment to deliver safe and effective treatment for various conditions.
Are Fluoroscopy-Guided Injections Covered by Insurance?
X-ray injections for pain can be covered in many cases by your insurance provider. If you suffer from chronic pain, and your treating physician recommends fluoroscopic injections, then you are likely to be eligible for insurance coverage.
Here, at our Brooklyn pain clinic, we accept most insurance providers: New York State Medicaid, HealthFirst, Fidelis Care, Affinity Group, Metro Plus, Amerigroup, BlueCross / BlueShield, Medicaid Plan, and United Health Care Community Plan are welcome.
Contact us to learn more about our services and book your next session with us right here in Brooklyn, New York.
- What is a fluoroscopic injection? These are X-ray-guided pain injections. They usually consist of anti-inflammatory or anti-pain medications injected to a painful body region – usually vertebral joints.
- How painful are fluoroscopic injections? X-ray injections are not painful; we administer a numbing agent beforehand. All you will feel is a slight prick when the injection is delivered.
- Who should avoid fluoroscopy-guided injections? If you’ve been exposed to an excessive amount of radiation, are pregnant, diabetic, or have kidney problems or iodine allergy, Dr. Sardar may recommend other pain management treatments.
- What is the use of fluoroscopy? Fluoroscopy is a diagnostic and therapeutic technique. It uses an X-ray to visualize the internal part of your body and administer the injection directly into the source of pain.
- Are you put to sleep for fluoroscopy? Fluoroscopy pain injections are not usually done under general anesthesia. Dr. Sardar will deliver a local anesthetic to numb the skin so that you don’t feel any pain. However, you will be awake throughout the procedure.
- How long is a fluoroscopy procedure? This depends on the location of the injection and how many injections you will get. The procedure involves some technical preparation. It may take anywhere between 15 minutes and an hour.
- How many fluoroscopy sessions do I need? This depends on each patient and their specific condition. Some patients have months-long remission from pain after just one injection. Other patients require an injection every few months or every year.
- Who needs fluoroscopy? Anyone who suffers from chronic pain can benefit from this procedure. It’s commonly used to treat back pain. Fluoroscopic injections have some contraindications, such as pregnancy, kidney failure, or iodine allergy.
- Can you eat before a fluoroscopy session? We may ask you to avoid food or drinks at least 4 hours before your session is done with anesthesia. At the consultation, we will provide any necessary preparation you might need.
- How long does a steroid injection last? The pain relief may last for six months up to 1 year. However, it also depends on your body’s response to the treatment.
Fluoroscopy-Guided Injections for Pain – Further Readings
Epidural Corticosteroid Injections
Image-guided facet joint injection
Facet joint injections for management of low back pain: a clinically focused review
Nerve blocks with local anesthetics and corticosteroids in chronic pain: A clinical follow-up study
Joint Pain and Arthritis
Effectiveness and Risks of Fluoroscopically Guided Cervical Transforaminal Injections of Steroids: A Systematic Review with Comprehensive Analysis of the Published Data
Opioid Overdose Crisis
Fluoroscopically guided injections into the foot and ankle: localization of the source of pain as a guide to treatment–a prospective study