Childbirth Epidurals, Headaches and Back Pain

An Epidural Needle -- Can it cause Chronic Back Pain?  Ask Our Patients.

An Epidural Needle — Can it cause Chronic Back Pain? Ask Our Patients.

Recently, a nice young woman we’ll call Mrs. X came in to Chiropractic Advantage for some help. She was complaining of severe headaches and back pain. The headaches had started two years earlier, when Mrs. X received an epidural injection during childbirth. Evidently, the procedure did not go off ideally, and there was some leakage of spinal fluid at the injection site. Many of our patients have gone through epidural injections to alleviate some of the pain of childbirth. Unfortunately, there are some risks to the procedure. Sometimes, the back hurts at the injection site, and remains sore for months, even years, following the procedure. Some women report numbness or pain shooting into the leg. More stories from women who have had epidurals here.

What’s causing this back pain following an epidural injection? Is it scar tissue forming around the injection site? Maybe, but some patients, like Mrs. X, report pain immediately at the time of the procedure, not several days later when scar tissue would begin to form. Perhaps the needle, as it is inserted between two lumbar vertebrae, literally forces the vertebrae apart, causing spinal joint injury.

Whatever the cause, I encourage anyone who has recurrent headaches, back pain or numbness down the leg following an epidural to visit a chiropractor. A series of chiropractic adjustments should alleviate the symptoms in most cases, in my experience. By the way, Mrs. X felt a great deal better after her first chiropractic adjustment, and her whole family is happy to have her feeling well again!

All the best,
Sharon Martinez, D.C., Rancho Cucamonga

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