Objectives.: To assess the clinical effectiveness of single lumbar transforaminal epidural steroid injections (TFESIs) in subjects with radicular pain with or without radiculopathy. Design.: Retrospective observational series. Setting.: Single academic radiology pain management practice. Subjects.: Two thousand twenty-four subjects undergoing single lumbar TFESIs at the L4-5, L5-S1, or S1 neural foramina. Methods / Outcome Measures.: Subjects were assessed with a pain numerical rating scale (NRS, 0-10) and Roland-Morris disability questionnaire (R-M, 23-point Deyo modification) prior to TFESI and at 2 weeks and 2 months follow-up. Successful pain relief (responders) was defined as either ≥50% reduction in NRS or pain 0/10; functional success was defined as ≥40% reduction in R-M score. Results.: There were statistically significant (P<0.0001) reductions in mean NRS and R-M scores at 2 weeks and 2 months postinjection. For NRS, 40.9% were responders at 2 weeks and 45.6% at 2 months. For R-M, 31.9% were responders at 2 weeks and 41.3% at 2 months. The proportion of responders for NRS and R-M was higher when there was <3 months of pain (odds ratio 2-month NRS=2.42 [95% confidence interval: 1.82, 3.24], odds ratio 2-month R-M=2.61 [1.96, 3.48]). For subjects with <3 months of pain, the proportion of responders was 62.4% (56.5, 68.3%) for NRS and 59.3% (53.3, 65.3%) for R-M scores. Conclusions.: This retrospective observational study suggests TFESIs are clinically effective in the treatment of lumbar radicular pain. Subjects with a shorter duration of pain are more likely to achieve a successful outcome.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology
- Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine