Transforaminal injection is an injection at the side of the spine where a nerve roots exits. This opening is known as a foramen. This reduces the inflammation and swelling of spinal nerve roots and other tissues surrounding the spinal nerve root. This may in turn reduce pain, tingling and numbness and other symptoms caused by such inflammation, irritation or swelling. Also, the transforaminal injections can be used to identify a specific spinal nerve root level or levels that are the source of pain.
It is done either with the patient on the side for most neck injections and with the patient on the stomach for back injections. Occasionally other positions are used to optimize the X-ray view. Once in place, the injection is made and this will often feel like the normal pain that the patient feels in the distribution of that particular spinal nerve root. Finally, the needle is removed and an adhesive bandage is applied.
Thus, we generally advise all patients to have a ride home or backup plans in case one is needed. Most patients are advised to take it easy for a day or so after the procedure until the medication has a chance to work. However, most patients can perform any activity that they could perform before the procedure.