Epidural steroid injections (ESI) are often recommended for people who are suffering from chronic pain because of a herniated disc, spinal stenosis, bone spurs, and other injuries that cause the nerves to become inflamed. The procedure involves injecting steroids and other medications into a specific area of the spinal canal using a needle or catheter. The steroids are effective at relieving pain by reducing inflammation. However, as with any medical procedure, there are risks associated with an ESI. If the medical professional responsible for conducting the ESI does not properly position the needle or catheter, it can cause permanent nerve damage and other injuries.
To properly inject the medication, accurate placement of the needle is crucial. Oftentimes, fluoroscopic x-ray images are used to help guide the placement of the needle to the space within the spinal canal, but outside the dural tube. The dura is a thick membrane that surrounds the spinal cord, the spinal nerves, and spinal fluid.
Reasons to Pursue a Medical Malpractice Case
Like any medical procedure, there are risks associated with epidural steroid injections. However, if physicians or nurse practitioners responsible for the procedure make a mistake resulting in an injury, you may want to consider pursuing a medical malpractice case. An experienced medical malpractice lawyer can protect your legal rights and recommend the best course of action. The following are examples of medical negligence when performing an ESI:
Improper needle placement: If the steroid is injected into the spinal cord by mistake, it can cause severe damage. This can cause chronic pain, numbness, and other side effects that can significantly impact the patient’s quality of life.
Procedure done with an epidurogram: The epidurogram uses contrast dye to help with proper placement of the needle. If the physician omits this procedure, and the patient is injured, it will be difficult for them to explain why the injury occurred.
Injection of substances into arteries: If these substances enter into the spinal cord, it could cause a spinal cord stroke. Proper needle placement will avoid this type of injury from happening.
Other injection techniques: There are other techniques besides the e-ray and the fluoroscopy that doctors use during an ESI. These tend to be a bit riskier because the needle is not visually confirmed. Therefore, the risk of injury increases.
Medical malpractice lawsuits involving improper injection techniques are common because the patient often develops neurological deficits that are irreversible and permanent.
Baltimore Medical Malpractice Lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton Seek Justice for Victims of Medical Negligence
If you or someone you love has suffered permanent nerve damage, chronic pain, or any other injuries related to an epidural steroid injection, do not hesitate to contact the Baltimore medical malpractice lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton. If the medical professional responsible for your procedure did not place the needle properly, or failed to follow the appropriate injection protocols, we will hold them accountable for their actions. Our dedicated team will pursue the maximum financial compensation for your injuries and ensure that your legal rights are protected. To schedule a free consultation, call us today at 800-547-4LAW (4529) or contact us online.
Our offices are located in Baltimore, Columbia, Glen Burnie, and Towson, allowing us to represent medical malpractice victims in Maryland, including those in Anne Arundel County, Carroll County, Harford County, Howard County, Montgomery County, Maryland’s Western Counties, Southern Maryland, and the Eastern Shore, as well as the communities of Catonsville, Essex, Halethorpe, Middle River, rosedale, Gwynn Oak, Brooklandville, Dundalk, Pikesville, Nottingham, Windsor Mill, Lutherville, Timonium, Sparrows Point, Ridgewood, and Elkridge.