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Understanding the Basics
What are Spinal Injections?
Suffering from back pain doesn’t have to hinder your life. With spinal injections, you gain long-lasting relief from the most experienced orthopedic providers in Kansas City.
Keep in mind there isn’t a single type of spinal injection; rather, we offer a range of injections to treat multiple back conditions.
After your initial examination at Kansas City Orthopedic Alliance, we will recommend the best injection for your needs. From corticosteroids to regenerative medicine and everything in between, our practitioners provide the comprehensive care you need so you can return to the activities you enjoy.
Other back pain symptoms that may require spinal injections include:
Your First Appointment
Choosing spinal injections in Kansas City is a decision that typically involves guidance from your primary care doctor and orthopedic physician. When you choose Kansas City Orthopedic Alliance, one of our highly trained orthopedic spine specialists will conduct an initial evaluation to better understand your condition.
After a complete review of your results, your provider will then discuss whether spinal injections are the best treatment option for you.
Kansas City Orthopedic Alliance Pain Assessment
Assessing the Injury
Finding the right spinal injections in Kansas City starts with an assessment.
You can think of back pain as a spectrum, with some instances being more severe than others. The Kansas City Orthopedic Alliance orthopedic specialists always focus on each individual patient and their concerns before creating a treatment plan.
Therefore, during your initial appointment, we will often ask questions such as:
From there, we can decide whether spinal injections will align best with your needs and lifestyle goals.
After a proper assessment, we often begin with a physical examination to help determine the origin of your pain. In some cases, we may require advanced testing for a full diagnosis.
Establishing a Care Plan
Based on the results of your interview, examination, and imaging studies, you can expect a custom care plan catered specifically to you.
Many people believe it’s best to wait until pain becomes severe, leading them to “push off” or delay spinal injections. If you are in constant discomfort, have shooting or stabbing pains, have limited range of motion, or an inability to perform your daily activities, spinal injections may be right for you. New technologies allow patients with back pain to fully recover and enjoy the benefits of a more functional, pain-free lifestyle.
Before we perform the injection, we discuss the risks, benefits, and alternatives to the procedure, and we ensure we all agree on the path forward. During this process, we also review your allergies to ensure there are no contraindications to the procedural medications.
Dependent on your health history, your physician may require:
Pre-injection instructions will vary depending on your physician and the type of spinal injection you receive. Always check with your physician prior to your injections for his or her specific instructions.
How it Works
Spinal injections typically treat radiculopathies—pinched nerves causing neck and low back pain or pain that radiates into your arms or legs—and herniated or protruded discs. Epidural steroid injections help relieve back pain by reducing inflammation.
Since Kansas City Orthopedic Alliance offers a variety of spinal injections in Kansas City, how the injection works varies from patient to patient. However, there are certain practices we do with each patient. In general, we cleanse the injection site with a surgical cleansing solution.
After drawing up the medication, we perform the injection under sterile guided technique, using advanced imaging to ensure correct medication placement. Generally, the injection itself is the quickest part of the injection appointment.
How it Works
In some cases, we may use injections as a diagnostic tool to help narrow down your underlying condition. Normally, diagnostic injections only last for a few hours and aren’t meant to provide long-term pain benefit. You can think of these injections as another way to evaluate or confirm the suspected pain generator, much like your provider may recommend getting an X-Ray or MRI to get more information about your spine condition and pain.
What to Expect
It is always important for you as the patient to know what to expect with pain relief following an injection. At Kansas City Orthopedic Alliance, we outline the expected outcomes with each person. That way, patients can make an educated decision on whether they should proceed with spinal injections in Kansas City.
Each of our spinal injections provide varying levels of pain relief.
After the injection, we will discuss any specific post-procedure restrictions or guidelines. For most spinal injections, we ask you to not submerge the injection site underwater for 48 hours to further reduce infection risk. Showering is okay.
If we perform a diagnostic injection, we may provide you a pain diary to write your pain response in the hours following the injection. With steroid injections, we recommend avoiding heavy exercise for 2-3 days after the procedure.
It’s normal to experience mild soreness the night of or day(s) after the injection. This is generally well managed with ice or over-the-counter pain medications.
Your treatment plan may include a referral to a physical or occupational therapist to help regain range of motion, decrease pain, and increase strength in the affected area. The human body adapts and heals through movement, especially when guided by a trained musculoskeletal expert.
Your physician may recommend over-the-counter or prescription medications to reduce pain, muscle spasm, inflammation, and more. This will depend on your specific needs, symptoms, and other factors surrounding your condition.
Our Kansas City Orthopedic Alliance physicians only make recommendations for surgical interventions when we have exhausted all other conservative measures or it is apparent that the only available solution is surgery. This is always a collaborative decision. It’s important you feel empowered to make the best decision for you, with your goals and timelines in mind.
Common Signs & Symptoms
Back pain can manifest in many forms. Anything from dull aching, acute, point-specific pain to symptoms that radiate into the buttock, hip and down the legs is all commonly related to back pain.
Debilitating pain, sharp or stabbing pains, symptoms radiating to the lower leg and foot, an inability to stand upright, or limitations in mobility are all signs that treatment is necessary. Despite the source, for many patients, it is fairly common for the back pain to wax and wane.
Causes of back pain
At Kansas City Orthopedic Alliance, we utilize advanced technologies and testing to accurately diagnose the source of your pain. With a proper diagnosis, we can appropriately target therapies and interventions for your specific pain, leading to a quicker recovery. Common causes of low back pain include:
Additional Non-Surgical Treatments
Facet Joint Injections
Facet joint injections target the hinge-like joints that connect vertebrae of the spine. Based on your needs, your provider may use the injection as a diagnostic tool, or to treat conditions that affect the facet joints.
The sacroiliac joint sits at the bottom of your spine (between the sacrum and pelvic bones). Sacroiliac injections can help alleviate pain in the low back, buttocks, and legs.
Radiofrequency Ablation (RFA)
RFA is a therapeutic spinal treatment that utilizes a mild electrical current to disable nerve pain by “burning” the nerve to keep it from signaling pain.
About Kansas City Orthopedic Alliance
Meet Kansas City Orthopedic Alliance
Our board-certified, fellowship-trained physicians and surgeons are highly experienced in their respective fields and are considered among the top orthopedic providers in the Midwest.
Along with our Physician Assistants, Nurse Practitioners, and support staff, Kansas City Orthopedic Alliance physicians deliver the utmost level of dedicated care across a range of subspecialties.
Kansas City Orthopedic Alliance has the expertise you need.
Our care is personal. Our team is knowledgeable. And we’re more available than ever.
With access to board-certified specialists across Kansas City, we have the tools to meet almost every musculoskeletal condition.
Overland Park, Kansas10777 Nall Ave Suite 300 Overland Park, KS 66211
Leawood, Kansas3651 College Blvd. Leawood, KS 66211
Kansas City, MissouriSaint Luke's Medical Plaza #1 4320 Wornall Rd., Ste. 610 Kansas City, MO 64111
Belton, MissouriBelton Regional Campus 17067 S Outer Rd #301 Belton, MO 64012
An incredibly efficient office.
An incredibly efficient office. Physician was attentive, knowledgeable, clear and supportive. It was a great experience.
Dr. Scott Ellsworth is one of the best
Dr. Scott Ellsworth is one of the best I have ever worked with. He is knowledgeable, efficient, caring, and knows his patients. He has a special bedside manner that makes any patient in any situation feel comfortable. All of the nurses and office staff are wonderful as well.