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Thread: Lidocaine or Botox injections for those who have had surgery

  1. #1
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    Sep 2012
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    Lidocaine or Botox injections for those who have had surgery

    I would like to hear from anyone who has had had scoliosis surgery and then later received (for pain and muscle discomfort) either Botox injections into the muscles surrounding their spine, or Lidocaine injections. I've done some research, so I know the facts, but would like to hear specifically from anyone who has actually had the surgery and then had these injections. My Physical therapist told me this could be done. Injecting a fused spine is different than injecting a normal spine, so that is why I am looking for someone who has had this done int he years following the surgery.
    Thanks,
    Last edited by Cornerthree; 12-25-2012 at 01:50 AM.

  2. #2
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    May 2009
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    hi corner
    i have not had surgery...
    but i get botox shots in thoracic area every 3-4 months...

    jess

  3. #3
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    Nov 2005
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    Hello,

    I've had both types of injections, all along both sides of my spine, with a longstandng fusion. Don't worry! They don't need to go into your spinal cord or the dura (membrane that surrounds it) so there is no extra difficulty in having these injections with a fusion. Injecting a fused spine with lidocaine or botox is pretty much the same as injecting an unfused one; the injections go into muscles or nerve roots, so a spinal fusion wouldn't get in the way.

    Epidural injections can be problematic though, depending on how low your fusion goes. The anaesthetist administering the injections will be able to assess your particular situation.

    Good luck! I had a lot of relief following these sorts of injections

    T

  4. #4
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    Sep 2012
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    botox injections for spine

    Thank you for this info! If these treatment are so effective for those who are in pain either in spite of or because of the surgery, then why don't the doctors suggest it? It was my physical therapist who mentioned it and he didn't even know where I would go to get it done. In 25 years of being in pain from the surgery, no one ever mentioned it. Maybe it's new or maybe I have not been seeing good doctors. Anyway, I will be messaging you to get more info if I may.
    Thanks and best regards,

  5. #5
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    May 2009
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    hi corner
    a note about reason no one mentioned botox in general...
    it IS relatively new...new for use in tx of pain, non cosmetic use.
    it was first mentioned to me by another patient who was getting
    botox shots for pain in her hip...about 6 years ago
    i guess 6 years ago could be considered relatively new....??

    jess

  6. #6
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    Nov 2005
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    Im afraid I don't know how things work in the US. Here in the UK I got referred to a Pain Management Clinic by my GP rather than by a spinal surgeon, as I had been signed off by my surgeon many years before. The consultant anaesthetist who headed the Pain Clinic then referred me back to a spinal surgeon so I could get my fusion checked, but I remained under the care of the Pain Clinic and they tried various treatments with me, starting with steroid trigger point injections. I tried Botox injections a little later on. I know Botox has been used for muscle spasms for well over fifeen years here in the UK so it isn't really seen as a "new" treatment (a good friend has regular injections for Cerebral Palsy).

    Do you have such things as Pain Clinics where you are? I found that the doctors at my Pain Clinic were able to offer many more methods of treatment than my GP was. As well as various types of injections (such as trigger point injections, nerve blocks, caudal epidurals, Botox) they offered specialised physio, hydrotherapy, the loan of TENS machines, etc. Don't panic, there are many methods out there that could help you *smiley face*

  7. #7
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    i am surprised about the 15 years...
    i do not know that it has been used here for pain for that
    long...i am pretty sure insurance companies have NOT been approving
    it for use for that long in the States.

    jess

  8. #8
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    May 2008
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    Central NJ
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    I had surgery over 4 years ago. Last winter, I was having horrible muscle spasms triggered by one of the screws in my upper spine. An injection of lidocaine and cortisone did the trick so fast--within minutes I was feeling relief.
    __________________________________________
    Debbe - 50 yrs old

    Milwalkee Brace 1976 - 79
    Told by Dr. my curve would never progress

    Surgery 10/15/08 in NYC by Dr. Michael Neuwirth
    Pre-Surgury Thorasic: 66 degrees
    Pre-Surgery Lumbar: 66 degrees

    Post-Surgery Thorasic: 34 degrees
    Post-Surgery Lumbar: 22 degrees

  9. #9
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    Mar 2010
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    Hi. I haven't had surgery but have had trigger point injection with and without steroid (always with lidocaine), botox, nerve blocks and epidurals. As far as I know the botox is off label for the treatment of pain. It is currently used "label" for severe migraine (15+ per month) and muscle dystonias (including things like cerebral palsy and other causes). So if you are getting botox in the USA, it would have to be billed under one of those categories. I was placed in the dystonia category sicne my muscles are very hard and rigid and spastic. It's "mostly" in the cervical area, but my muscles are like that throughout my upper back and shoulders as well. I only get the botox in my neck (para spinals) and left shoulder (upper trapezius and scalene muscles). For the rest I get trigger point injections and deep muscle massage (massacre). For headaches I get occipital nerve blocks and for lower back pain I've gotten a few epidurals so far. They are considering SI joint injections.

    When these treatments work, it's great. Unfortunately for me, I have so many pain areas going on that I've never had relief in all the areas at once. I'm also on baclofen and klonopin for the muscle spasticity. They help some, but nothing is a cure-all.

    I wouldn't fear these treatments with or without surgery. The only thing to watch for is getting too much steroid. Jrnyc had a bad reaction to getting too much and her body quit producing enough cortisol. That is a bad thing, so I would suggest talking to your doctor about that possibility ahead of time if you are going to be getting routine steroid injections.

    Please let us know how things go for you. I hope you get the desired relief!
    Be happy!
    We don't know what tomorrow brings,
    but we are alive today!

  10. #10
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    Sep 2012
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    Thank you

    Thank you to everyone for sharing your experiences about the injections. It has been most helpful. We do have pain clinics in the US, but it's a world apart from Britain as we are a paid medical system here and the previous poster was right; if Botox has not been approved for spinal pain, no insurance would cover it. Pain clinics have offered me meds and tens machines, which are useless for my deep bone pain. Perhaps I can travel out of the country to get some botox or lido injections in the future.

    Thanks again,

  11. #11
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    New Bern, NC
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    Have you been offered a spinal cord stimulator implant by your pain management Doctor? I wouldn't think the tens unit would be any better than a heating pad. I could be wrong.
    Sally
    Diagnosed with severe lumbar scoliosis at age 65.
    Posterior Fusion L2-S1 on 12/4/2007. age 67
    Anterior Fusion L3-L4,L4-L5,L5-S1 on 12/19/2007
    Additional bone removed to decompress right side of L3-L4 & L4-L5 on 4/19/2010
    New England Baptist Hospital, Boston, MA
    Dr. Frank F. Rands735.photobucket.com/albums/ww360/butterflyfive/

    "In God We Trust" Happy moments, praise God. Difficult moments, seek God. Quiet moments, worship God. Painful moments, trust God. Every moment, thank God.

  12. #12
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    So. Calif., near Palm Springs
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cornerthree View Post
    Thank you to everyone for sharing your experiences about the injections. It has been most helpful. We do have pain clinics in the US, but it's a world apart from Britain as we are a paid medical system here and the previous poster was right; if Botox has not been approved for spinal pain, no insurance would cover it. Pain clinics have offered me meds and tens machines, which are useless for my deep bone pain. Perhaps I can travel out of the country to get some botox or lido injections in the future.

    Thanks again,
    Hi,

    I haven't had surgery yet. If you aren't already seeing a pain mgmt dr, I recommend it. I've been going to one for a few years now. Mostly I've tried steroid injections at a lot of different vertebral levels for the pain, and also a nerve ablation procedure. Unfortunately, I didn't get any long-term relief. I did ask about Botox injections, but my dr. said for pain, insurance will usually only approve Botox for the neck, and... I think he said the upper back - not sure. My pain is mid and low back. He said we could see if they would approve it, or if I wanted to find out how much it cost to pay for it on my own, we could do that and try it. I just didn't follow up on it, and that dr. left the practice.

    I just saw another pain mgmt dr. & he's going to have me try something called an interferential unit. It's kind of similar to a TENS unit, but it's supposed to treat deeper pain than a TENS. You might want to try that at some point. I'm waiting for insurance to authorize mine at the moment, but it shouldn't take long.

    Lisa
    Age 44 (now 48). "Mild" curve (and pain) at age 16.
    No x-ray, brace or followup as a teen.
    Told curve wouldn't progress or need treatment.
    Chiropractor said I had a 22-degree TL curve, at age 20.
    Non-SRS surgeon said curve is 46 to 51 degrees, at age 44.
    SRS surgeon thinks curve is 42-degrees thoracic, 39-degrees lumbar, age 44.
    Also have bilateral pars defect at L5.
    Considering surgery due to pain.

  13. #13
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    Nov 2005
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    Don't focus too much on the Botox injections if it's unlikely that you can get them. I found the steroid trigger-point injections to be much, much more effective and I am sure that US insurance companies would cover them as I hear about people having them all the time. YMMV, of course.

  14. #14
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    May 2009
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    hi Lisa
    i get botox in upper spine, every 3-4 months...insurance OK's it...
    i had it once for lower spine...did NOT help...actually made a
    sciatica worse!!
    i NEVER got any help from trigger point injections...they didn't get
    deep enough (just my theory)
    i tried everything...epidural, nerve ablation, facet block, etc...
    only PLACE that worked was sacroiliac joint injections....
    got amazing relief...but then i OD'd on steroid and cortisol
    crashed...so now i do not get any shots...

    i suspect people with surgery might get more relief than those
    without surgery, IF their pain is limited to smaller area...

    jess

  15. #15
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    Nov 2005
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    Hi Jess, I think it's different for everyone - I've had steroid trigger-point injections all the way down my spine and across my shoulders; on occasion I've had more than 20 at once. They were so painful to have that the first time I tried having them I blacked out after three shots, so after that I'd be booked in to have a light general anaesthetic whilst the Pain Management doctor (who was a consultant anaesthetist) did them, as it was easier for both of us! The pain relief afterwards was utterly amazing though, I felt like I was floating because all the tension and pain due to the tension had gone :bigsmile:

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