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Epidural spinal steroid injection

Hi everyone. I am having an epidural spinal steroid injection into my lower back on Saturday at the hospital. Really scared and not sure what to expect and I am not having a sedative so I am hoping it is not too painful. Somebody please put my mind at rest. Thank you xxx

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To ease your mind check your doctors credentials Board Certified and past lawsuits or settlements

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Why? Omg am I doing the wrong thing having it done? xx

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I had a wonderful PT

1) support and extend the spine with exercises as expected

2) address posture to free the pressure at ALL times

A new chair with lumbar support with legs supported when at rest and looking and examining proper support for back and legs during sleep. This allowed lack of pressure while at rest.

Eating at a table was another adjustment of seat

Changing what was supporting the body at rest allowed nerves a lifestyle to change and improve slowly but definitely with proper pT stengthening and exercise

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Thank you so much. That is very helpful. I bought an adjustable Tempur bed with a soft memory mattress. This has really made my back worse but because it cost a lot of money I hesitate to change it. I need to find a very good physio and get the right exercises and improve my posture which I know I need to. I thought about doing Pilates as well. There are a lot of areas I need to improve but I need the support and guidance to get me motivated. Still not sure what to do with this epidural steroid injection!

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Sounds like you are looking at everything which is great!

Maybe sell the bed on eBay and get one that is firm? Doing everything in your power to address what is causing the pain is typically the best way to go. It is more doable than you think but overhauling your lifestyle is typically the answer. Pilates is probably not best. As it is not controlled enough movement. Get stronger with the exact exercises you need that are targeting the problem. You will get stronger and you will have much less pain.

I got severely injured from a spinal injection so I’m not the right person to ask. The anesthesiologist was not Board Certified and is practicing still til this day. I’m sure many people have had good responses. I’m unfortunately not one of them.

Have you tried Quell the band you wear on your leg to take down the pain?

Acupuncture with pT is also good.

I’m sure your experience will be different.

Let me know how it goes if you have it done. Think positively.

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Thank you so much for your help. I will certainly let you know how it goes. You said you were injured from your spinal injection? What happened and did it make you worse? x

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They hit a nerve and injected directly into the nerve.

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Omg that must have been painful. I am home now and it went very well. They gave me a strong painkiller injection before the procedure which acted like a sedative and I really hardly felt the epidural injection. It was all done under X-ray and only took about ten minutes in all. My legs now feel very tingly and my feet. I have to go back on the 29th June for follow up and to see if it has worked xx

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I bought a tempur mattress once. It was great in the shop but after sleeping on it for a few nights I realised I had made a massive mistake and although it cost a lot I decided to get myself another mattress as having a bad back every morning is murder. I now have an extra firm one which is great.

Have had various X-ray guided injections in my lower back. Before the first one I was so nervous, like you but as it is your first one and I take it you have not had surgery it is over before you know it.

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Like you. My back is bad when I get up in the morning on this Tempur mattress. I got a soft one which was a big mistake. I have never had surgery on my back but the MRI scan showed quite severe wear and tear and two crushed nerves which he thinks could be the cause of my feet problems. I was taking a low dose of amitriptyline but I am at present withdrawing from them as getting a lot of side effects. I really hope this injection helps even a little bit. Thank you for your reply xx

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Good luck.

I had 3 spinal ops but kept on having nerve pain. I was given amitriptyline but it absolutely did not agree with me. After further trial and error I now get some relief by taking tramadol and pregabalin although I am trying to reduce the dose as it plays havoc with my memory.

But seriously get rid of the mattress as no amount of treatment will work if you continue on a too soft sleeping surface every night. It may seem expensive but you do spend a third of your life in bed!

(I found a relative cheap mattress which works for me, it’s the Sealy millionaire extra firm orthopaedic).

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Ahh! Thank you. I am just so scared that it could make things worse. I have to try though or I will regret it and wonder if it could have helped. I have an adjustable Tempur bed so I assume I have to have another Tempur mattress as they need to bend. Quite often they sell Tempu mattresses in furniture shops that sell beds so will have a look. I was not offered surgery as he says it is not bad enough for that but offered the epidural injection which he did not think would help my feet but I could try. I am stopping the amitriptyline at the moment and have reduced down to 5mg for a month then I will stop. I have tried Gabapentin and Lyrica but awful side effects. They all make me feel suicidal! I will let you know how I get on xxxx

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The tempur mattress confirms to the heat of the body. It traps the heat and does not help with inflammation in the body. It also even with firm conforms and melts with the bodies heat and does not always give proper support. A normal mattress is usually best.

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Hiya. Well all over. It was not as bad as I was expecting. They gave me a painkilling injection before the procedure which acted like a sedative. The epidural was so quick and I hardly felt it. I was so relieved when it was all over. I was in the hospital about five hours and I must admit they were all brilliant. I have a follow up appointment on the 29 June to see if it has worked. Feel nauseous at the moment and hope this wears off soon. Thank you so much for all your support xxx

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I had hot and cold flushes for a while and a flushed face. It went and so will the nausea. Hope it works for you x

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Just had an omelette and the nausea has eased a bit. My feet are on fire so really don't think the epidural will help them. I know it takes about three weeks for the injection but I do expect miracles. Thank you so much for everything and please keep in touch xxxx

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Can you please elaborate as to why you are having this injection? Is it for pain relief? I can tell you it is very dangerous and will only last a short time.

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Two years ago my feet started feeling numb, tingling and I had awful burning. My doctor said I had neuropathy and referred me to a neurologist but all the nerve conduction tests he gave me were normal. I was prescribed with a low dose of amitriptyline. Recently I went to a Spinal consultant and had an MRI scan which showed wear and tear in my lower spine and also two crushed nerves which he said would be causing my feet problems and it is not neuropathy. He offered me this injection but I wanted to see if it helped my feet rather than my lower back. My feet are getting worse and stopping me walking my dogs and wandering round the shops and making me very anxious. I do not have any pain just the burning and numbness mainly in my toes. I do not want to take any risks that will make my feet worse. I will be grateful for any information you can give me as I still have a couple of days to change my mind. Thank you xx

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I have recently experienced what you have. I have had back and neck surgeries and recently injured myself during exercise. The pain was the worst I have ever felt. My leg was numb, top of my foot and big toe. I have had injections and a recent one. Prednisone dose pack. Meds. I still couldn’t even sleep in my own bed. I would be up all night for nights in a row. I always forget to go back to the chiropractor. And sometimes I think it’s bullshit. I started going and within one week I was walking, sleeping in my bed, skipping meds.

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I have been to a McTimoney Chiropractor which are very gentle but now people are saying not to go to a chiropractor as they can make it worse. I am hoping I will be referred by my doctor to a Physio to get the right sort of exercises. If I do not have this Spinal steroid injection I will never know if it will help my feet or am I clutching at straws!

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I am not a doctor but in my opinion I suggest checking that the doctor and especially an anesthesiologist is Board Certified and see if there are any lawsuits that were filed as well as any settlements are important for an informed self opinion.

Also,

A second or third opinion when it comes to any procedure especially your spine is never a bad idea.

As for the internet, Go to Pub Med if you want to read what has been medically published.

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Thank you. I will look on the internet but if I don't give it a try I will never know if it will help my feet problems which is from two crushed nerves in the lower spine. My feet feel numb, burn and tingle which the Spinal consultant says is coming from my lower back and these crushed nerves. I have been suffering for two years and it has been hell. I have no pain in my feet. They thought I had neuropathy in my feet for two years until recently when I had an MRI scan on my lower back which revealed wear and tear and two crushed nerves. Thank you for your reply.

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Hi

I’ve had 6 epidurals without sedation you may feel a sharp pain for seconds while they numb the area but after that it’s not that bad

Sadly none of them helped me

However I had a nerve block done on New Year’s Eve that is only just starting to fail

Hope you get some relief

Best of luck

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Thank you. Not many people seem to have much success with them but I need to try. Maybe I will be one of the lucky ones! xx

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Just go for it. It only worked the once for Derek but when you are in pain you have to try anything x

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Hi I had an epidural before a big op so when I woke up after being put out I would have some pain relief. I can honestly say that you barely feel a thing and my husband has had three for his bad back and very little pain so please don't worry xx

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Thank you. I am so glad they have helped you xx

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The injection will hurt for a few seconds while they do it, you may feel a bit tender afterwards but it's nothing to worry about. I've had plenty of injections in my back. They work for some, not for others but they work for me. I have them every six months. Don't worry, you'll be fine.

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Thank you so much. Very reassuring xx

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I’ve had several types of injection in my back, steroid, RF nerve ablation, epidural nerve block and just recently a foranimal injection. I never remember having them but I am sedated, please ask if you can be because I don’t understand why not.

I can’t say however that any of them have worked and I don’t know why, I even had facet joint injections, they’ve tried the lot. I do however get a day’s relief with no pain whatsoever due to the local anaesthetic, it is blissful to recall what it used to be like when I had no pain before my slipped disc emergency. I go back to orthopaedic surgeon in June to tell him my results. I have recurring bulge at L5S1 facet joint arthritis, severe narrowing and they call it degenerative disc disease. I had to have emergency surgery in 2012, it was good for 1 year then has come back and has been chronic pain for 6 years. I too have buzzing, tingling, areas of numbness, heel pain and burning in hip, thigh, calf and outer left of left leg. My reflexes are non existent back of ankle and that area is absolutely numb. I really hope your injections work they certainly do for some. Best wishes, Kay x

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I asked if I could have a sedative but he said that I was having an epidural so did not need one. I don't know any difference! In my letter it says to have a light breakfast. My feet make me more miserable than my back. They feel numb, burn and tingle 24 hours a day. The Spinal consultant did not think the injection would work but I felt I needed to try as my feet and back are so hard to live with and really getting me down. I am sorry you are in so much pain too. Have you tried physio or a chiropractor? Thank you for your reply xx

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I really hope it gives you some relief, do you take tablets for the nerve pain? I agree that having painful feet has such a knock in effect to your very well being.

There might be a time after your injection it begins to feel sore in the area but you may also hopefully get the blissed relief from it all for longer than I did. Why can’t we have local anaesthetic injections every day???

Seriously though best wishes. I did try acupuncture and chiropractor but every week I went back I was back in pain, he did help stretch me but it hurts too be touched, even a massage and reflexology hurt me now and I have to ask for a very slight touch. I’m told I’m over sensitive to pain and pain management think it’s all a part of PTSD or previous surgical procedures but they have never said it’s fibromyalgia which is what I suspect- who knows? X

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I am on a low dose of amitriptyline but I am trying to come off them as I get some awful side effects. Have tried Gabapentin and Lyrica but they are even worse. I can live with the pain in my back but finding it so difficult to live with the burning, tingling and numbness of my feet. The consultant said it is probably coming from the damaged nerves in my back but he is not sure that is the reason. I don't want to take medication but sometimes I am desperate and amitriptyline does help with sleep. I have tried a chiropractor and physio but has not really helped. I am just hoping the injection may help my feet but I am not holding my breath! xx

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Go for it. I have had several of these epidural steroid caudal injections and each time have worked wonders with me.I couldnt straighten my back at all ,I was so bent over before the first one and in awful pain due to ruptured discs and exposed nerves. Within a week of having the injection I was almost straight and the pain had lessened considerably. I have an injection roughly every 2 years and they keep me mobile. They dont work straight away ,take a week or so for the full effect so its gradual. The doctor will inject a local anasthetic into your spine first. I can honestly say it is not painful, you just feel a bit of pressure. Afterwards you have to lay on your tummy for a while,the nurse will take your blood pressure, you will be given a cup of tea and then you can go home. No driving for a few days.

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Thank you for your reassurance. I asked about a local anaesthetic but I was told I was having an epidural and was not offered a local. I really hope it works for me and helps my feet which is why I have to try it xx

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Hi, I really hope it works for you.If you are nervous ask for a sedative beforehand. Good luck and let me know how you got on xxx

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Thank you so much. Will let you know how I get on. They said I could have a light breakfast so not sure if they would give me a sedative if I have eaten. He has said there is a possibility that this injection could make things worse which has been worrying me. I know they have to give you a warning that things could go wrong so you won't sue them but I could not live with my feet if they were any worse! So did you have a sedative or does an epidural numb you so you don't feel anything? If it really hurts I may move and cause damage. I realise now I did not ask enough questions! xxx

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Hi again, no I didnt have a sedative but before the epidural they put in an injection of local anaesthetic so it was completely numb where they put the injection of steroid in. Maybe you could take a diazepam or a calms pill to soothe your nerves beforehand. Have they given you a leaflet telling you all about the procedure ?

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No I was not given a leaflet which I thought was not very good. I had to phone to see if I could have breakfast and she said a light one as I have to be in at 7.30am. I will see someone before the procedure and ask questions then. Maybe I am better not knowing too much! xxx

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That is awful, them not giving you the info.You need to rest the day you have the injection and not to do any prolonged bending or sitting. It can take up to 3 weeks to feel the full benefit. I thought my first one hadnt worked until one morning I realised I had turned over in bed without a tremendous struggle and even got out of bed without a lot of effort and groaning, They follow it up with physiotherapy afterwards, ask if you can have hydrotherapy as well. I found the hydrotherapy was very helpful and still go to a private pool once a week. You can do things in the warm water that you cant on dry land. I could hardly walk when I started and I swear its the hydrotherapy that is keeping me mobile. Your hospital is lacking in not giving you more info beforehand, I received a 4 page leaflet explaining what would happen and how I would feel and what to do afterwards. Good luck tomorrow, I hope everything goes well for you,xxxx

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Hi. Well I am home now and so glad it is all over. They gave me a strong painkilling injection before the epidural which acted as a sedative and I really did not feel hardly anything. I could not believe it when he said "that's it. All over". It was not at all as bad as I was expecting. Afterwards they gave me tea and sandwiches and said as soon as I had a wee I could go home. I feel nauseous now but hoping that will wear off. I have a follow up appointment on the 29 June to see if it has worked or not. He also said like you it might take about three weeks before or if it works. Thank you for your support xxxx

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I am so so pleased it all went smoothly for you. Did they give you an aftercare leaflet? I have been thinking of you today. When I have mine I usually rest on my bed afterwards and dont do much at all. The improvement in pain comes so gradually and then one day you think" oh I havent got the pain there anymore" Have they put you on the waiting list for physio ? Dont forget to ask about hydrotherapy, its much easier to excercise in warm water than on dry land. Good luck and take it easy today, remember baby steps, and I hope and pray the injection will help you as it has me.xxxx

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Thank you so much. No I did not get any leaflets! Just the follow up appointment. I have rested this afternoon. Still in pain and my feet are burning and numb but I expect the injection to work straightaway! I really appreciate all your support and please keep in touch xxx

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I was told not to do any prolonged sitting or bending as it can stop the injection working for the first 5 days. I remember feeling extra hungry the first day too. Be kind to yourself over the next few days and dont do too much. Its better to lay down than to sit. I found a tin of magicool helps the burning in my feet. Its made to cool you down in summer. Only magicool works though not the own brands. You can get it from boots ,tesco etc. I hope you are not on your own, have you someone to help you? Take care and I hope you feelbetter tomorrow.xxxx

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My husband is here and my two golden retrievers! Slept really well and did not wake up with such a stiff back. I have never heard of magicool and will definitely follow that up. Is it a cream or gel? Do you get burning in your feet as well and how do you cope? Nobody really knows why my feet are like this. It could be these crushed nerves in my back or maybe small fibre neuropathy caused by damaged nerves in the feet. I just wish I knew! xxxx

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Glad to hear you had a good nights sleep. The Magicool is in a tin and you spray it on. They dont know what causes my feet burning, possibly really bad circulation and varicose vein.My feet are very discoloured as well and numb in places. My back is the main problem with lots of prolapsed discs and exposed nerves. Animals are great nurses, I have 2 cats myself and they always know when I am not well and are a great comfort. Another thing I find helpful is the cool pads.They sell them everywhere and also market them for dogs in the summer. I sit with my feet on them and put them in the bed too.They are blue and about 12 inches by 10inches. You dont have to put them in the fridge or anything. I have 2 so when 1 starts to lose effect I use the other. If I think of anything else that helps I will let you know. Hope you feel better today xxxx

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Hiya. Our dogs have the cooling coats. I knew they made cooling mats but did not think of buying one for my feet. That is a good idea! I am always putting my feet in a bowl of cold water with some Epsom salts and then rub some hemp active gel on them. Sometimes it helps and sometimes it doesn't. Today my feet are awful and praying this injection has only just flared my feet up and not made them worse. I wish I knew what has caused my burning/numb feet but nobody can be sure. I had an MRI on my lower back and mostly wear and tear with no exposed nerves only the two crushed nerves which he said could be what is causing it but he could not be sure. I have had circulation tests, diabetic tests and nerve conduction tests which were all normal. It is so hard to live with this 24 hour burning xxxx

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I am sorry you are suffering so much. Borrow one of the dogs mats and see if it helps with your feet. I have fibromyalgia and have widespread pain and sometimes the painkillers just dont touch it. I am off this morning to hydrotherapy which I love. Doctors dont know everything and they dont like to admit it. I do a lot of research on google to try and find out causes and treatments. I know how you are feeling with the burning feet, sometimes I just want to scream. Hang on there,fingers crossed you will fel better soon xxxxxx

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Hiya. Have increased my amitriptyline today and hopefully if and when my feet calm down I will try and reduce them again. I just hope this injection has not made my feet worse. Back to soaking my feet in cold water and the hemp gel. Maybe it is peripheral neuropathy in my feet after all and not the crushed nerves in my back. If the doctors don't know then I am just clutching at straws. Thank you so much for your help and support. I really appreciate it xxxx

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My doctors always put the burning feet down to the fibromyalgia. I get cramp as well as numbness too.Its awful,isnt it?Another thing I do is I put a wet towel in a freezer bag and put it in the freezer. I think the cool pads work best for me,I have several so as soon as one starts getting warm I can swap it over. Body shop do a cooling foot lotion with menthol in. Hope you feel an improvement tomorrow xxx

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Thanks I will try these suggestions. It is so miserable isn't it. I have joined a group on Facebook for peripheral neuropathy and I have soon realised that what works for one may not work for others. Some prefer heat and others prefer cold. It is a helpful group even though I don't know whether I have got it or not. Friends and family do not understand the pain we are in so it does help to join groups and speak to people who understand and can help xxx

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yes you are right.Unless you suffer it you cant possibly understand the pain it causes. Most people think that putting your feet up after a soak in water will do the trick. I try anything once, if it doesnt work I look for something else.so far I havent found anything that stops it permanently,just relief for a while.xxx

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I will let you know how this injection works as I know it can take about three weeks to take effect. Take care and thank you for everything xxx

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You are very welcome. I hope all goes well for you and you see and feel some improvement. good luck xx

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Love and hugs xxx

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Hi, I have had 3. 1 hurt, 2 didn't. It doesn't take long. Didn't have sedation for any, it is not most pleasant experience but bearable. I found it interesting to see what they did being awake. As you say if you never have it you will never know so go for it. Good luck.

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Thank you xx

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That is wonderful!! I have my fingers and toes crossed it helps for the long haul!

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Thank you xxx

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Hey I am having this soon how did it go?

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Hiya. I really did not feel a thing but unfortunately it has not helped at all and in fact my back and feet are a lot worse. It is nearly three weeks since I had it and the spinal surgeon said it could take up to three weeks to work. I am not really hopeful it will now but you may be different xx

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