Cervical Transforaminal Epidural Steroid Injections (CTFESI) can be an effective therapy for radicular pain. However, these can also cause a number of complications some of which are serious. The procedure should only be performed by someone who is trained and familiar with its intricacies.


Major complications:

(1) death

(2) cerebral infarction and/or edema

(3) spinal cord infarction and/or edema

(4) cortical blindness

(5) seizures

(6) high spinal anesthesia

(7) bleeding with epidural or paraspinal hematoma

(8) infection (epidural abscess, etc)


Minor complications (temporary without permanent deficits):

(1) vasovagal reaction

(2) transient pain or weakness

(3) prolonged paresthesias

(4) headaches

(5) hypersensitivity reaction

(6) transient global amnesia

(7) peripheral neuropraxia

(8) skin rash


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