EPIDURALS DESTROY THE DISCS? There’s some convincing evidence that have epidurals (for neck or low back pain) actually increases the chance that someone will have surgery. At first thought this sounds strange, and I have usually considered the association as one more of a trajectory of treatment–taking the more invasive path (that actually begins with MRI or CT far, far too early in the game) leads ultimately down to surgery. Strong data supports a huge cost savings if a chiropractor is the first point of entry for any musculoskeletal complaint, and we’re just not prone to ordering advanced imaging, epidurals, medication or surgery until it’s absolutely needed.
This study, while not done in humans, finds that the anesthetic commonly used in epidurals (and this DOES include the ones used for giving birth) actually causes the cells of the disc to die off. Generally not a desirable outcome. The answer? Always, always see a chiropractor first for any type of musculoskeletal complaint.