Effects of steroid injection for back pain

Patient

Q: I have had 4 epidural steroid injections in 4 months in my back (spinal stenosis). How much steroid can I have and still be "safe"?

Doctor

A:   Steroid injections for back pain are a relatively safe treatment with very low complication rate. The steroids act locally and very little is absorbed into the bloodstream. Therefore, you can continue to receive steroid treatment in this manner as long as it continues to work to relieve your symptoms.

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