Q:  Do you prescribe narcotic (opioids) medications?
A:  No.

Q:  Why can’t I eat?
A:  Because you may throw up!  Most patients do very well.  Some patients have an involuntary response, called a vasovagal episode (lightheaded, sweaty and nauseous), to the procedure.  This is usually mild and goes away quickly when we turn you onto your back.

Q:  How long must I go without food and drink?
A:  4 hours when you come to my office Chesapeake Bay Pain Medicine, PC on 329 Edwin Drive, Suite 100 in Virginia Beach, VA and 8 hours when you go to Bon Secours Ambulatory Surgical Center on 828 Healthy Way.

Q:  What about my medications?
A:  You may have a small sip of water with your medications if you need to take them within this 4 or 8 hour period.

Q:  Are there some medication that I must stop before the procedure?
A:  Yes!  Blood thinners.
Plavix must be stopped for 8 days.  Your doctor that gives you this medication MUST approve this for you.
Coumadin (Warfarin) must be stopped for 6 days.  Your doctor that gives you this medication MUST approve this for you.
While not critical, stop aspirin for 5 to 7 days and Motrin type medications (nonsteroidal anti inflammatory drugs, NSAID’s) for 3 to 5 days.

Q:  How long will the injection last?
A:  Most of the injections that I perform contain local anesthetic and steroid.  This is a therapeutic injection meant to last a long time.  However, I will tell you it may last 2 days, 2 weeks, 2 months or 2 years, but we will not know until we try.
I also perform a diagnostic injection with local anesthetic.  This is to help identify the source of your pain.  This injection may not help at all or could last several hours to several days.

Q:  Will it hurt?
A:  Yes, there is a pinch and burn with the numbing medicine.  I use Lidocaine and I describe it as a bee sting.  Some patients feel very little pain and others tell me it was a wasp sting.

Q:  What are my limitations after the procedure?
A:  Go home and take it easy the rest of the day.  Resume normal activities the next day.

Q:  Will I be in pain after the injection?
A:  Most patients leave the office no worse than when they came in.  Some patients have less pain temporarily from the local anesthetic.  Some patients may have a flare of their pain for several days.

Q:  What can I do for pain after the procedure?
A:  You may return to all of your usual medications after the injection.  You can use ice to the injection site for the first day after the procedure.  You can then alternate with ice and heat.  If you where previously taking Motrin type medications (NSAID’s) or Tylenol, you may alternate these 2 medications every 6 to 8 hours.

Q:  What are the risks of the procedure?
A:  There are always risks when a needle is placed into your body.  All of the risks are very low.  Some of the risks I talk about are headache, neck or back ache, nerve damage and infection.  Again, in trained hands and with the X-ray machine, the risks are very low.

Q:  Is the doctor nice?
A:  Absolutely!