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Avatar universal

Spinal headache, failed blood patch, now what?

Hi all, Got the nasty headache, had a blood patch done on Friday.  Worst thing I have EVER been through, that blood patch.  It was worse than the tap.  Anyway, it did not work. (I am flat on my back as I type this thanks to my trusty laptop and a bunch of pillows.)  What now?  Do I just wait it out?  It's getting pretty old.  I even asked for vicodin, which I never take but the pain is unbearable.  I'm so bummed.  Amy
41 Responses
195469 tn?1388322888
Oh Amy,

I am so sorry to hear that you are in the brunt of this LP headache.  Drink alot of fluid and add some caffiene products.  Lay flat as much as possible.  My headache lasted 5 days with the blood patch and eventually my cerebral spinal fluid stablilizied and the headache disppeared.

If you still feel this bad on Monday,  I would call your doctor.

I am SO SORRY and I really do understand how bad you are hurting.  Did you start doing your regular activites too quickly after the tap?  This is what happened to me.  Sometimes things like this remind me that I am NOT wonder woman.

Please take care of yourself.  Prayers going up for you, sweetheart.  I'm here for you.

195469 tn?1388322888
I did NOT have a blood patch...I chaulked mine up to doing too much too soon.
Avatar universal
You are right there for me woman.  I stayed down Mon - thursday; called neuro thursday and had blood patch on Fri.  (Again by "Dr. cute stuff" but by now of course I looked like Mrs. "death on a stick".)  Worst day of headache was saturday, but my pcp said that had nothing to do with the patch.  The tap was easy; I will never ever do a blood patch again.  Love to you, Amy
147426 tn?1317265632
The headache will eventually wear of.  Sometimes the patch takes a few days to seal completely.  Sometimes a second patch is needed, but I see that that would not be a consideration.  I suspect you'll be feeling better by tomorrow.

I had a horribly botched spinal anesthesia in 1983 - more than a dozen pokes by an incompetent anesthesiologist and three full injections of anesthetic.  I had a severe headache, relieved partially by the patch.  The headache resolved gradually over the next six weeks.  That is really worst case scenario.  The doc was using a needle that was too big and didn't know when to stop trying.  My suregeon was furious and formally complained about the guy who lost his position with the hospital.

I glad it's over.  Quix
335728 tn?1331414412
Oh Amy, I am so sorry that you are feeling SO rotten and if there was anything I could do you take it away I would!  I have had the LP headache (real bad for 3 days) and if it is anything like that I certainly do feel for you!  I hope that this pain does not continue for you and that you start to feel better really soon!
If it's any consolation, I have a toothache that is making me want to bang my head against the wall or pull the bloody thing myself!  Does it help that I am feeling your pain for you through my tooth! tee hee
I really wish the best for you Amy and I hope that it will be over soon for you!  You know I was thinking that wouldn't post LP Pain and the pain from a toothache be a good deterent for criminals...just hold that over their head instead of jail time with a warm cell and 3 squares...hmmm, maybe I am on to something???  ha ha ha  
Anyway, good luck Amy and feel better soon ok?

Lots of Hugs,

Avatar universal
Thank you Quix, you have given me hope.  And thank you Rena, you made me laugh!  God bless you, I will make it through this.  There are people dealing with more!  Amy
246236 tn?1275478902
Oh, I HATED (!!!) that blood batch!  You're right, the LP was nothing compared to that!  I felt like I couldn't breathe and had so much pain radiate immediates up through my chest and down through my legs!  Fortunately, mine worked and the headache went away.  I'm sorry you're still struggling!  Angela
220917 tn?1309784481
Oh, no.  I'm so sorry you're suffering with a headache, Amy.  You have too much going on.  What are we going to do with you?  I suppose just throw you at the mercy of Dr. Cute Stuff -- once you get your hair and make-up refreshed.  Throw me, too.  You just may need some support.  What can I say, I will sacrifice for my friends....

Anyway, I hope the headache gets better quickly, girl.  Hang in there.  Prayers up.

Rena -- I checked around, and it actually DOES count that you have a toothache in this vicarious pain consolation for Amy.  Good going!  That or childbirth is about the only thing that is close, it turns out -- or a kidney stone.   Great friend -- hope you're better, but I just read another post that says you're not.  Hang tough, Cookie!

Feel well, Heather, Q, and Angela!

Avatar universal
Wow, I had an epidural 7/12 when i had my daughter. They went to far also and fluid leaked out. 2 days after i got my blood patch, it did not work AT ALL! was horrible. Stayed in bed for a while week waitin it out. i couldnt even walk to the bathroom! I would have to crawl it hurt so bad. And now, 10 weeks later it feels as if I have been gettin the spinal headaches again! They dont feel like regular headaches or migraines but just like the spinal headaches. I have no clue what to do..

Avatar universal
I feel for u.. I have had my spinal headache's for 3 yrs and i have never done a blood patch because i am 2 scared... AS time goes on it will get a little better...
Avatar universal
hey all,
I too am suffering from a post-spinal headache... Had a LP on 04/01 & the 1st blood patch on 04/05 (2nd one today 05/12). I feel like death! My headache is worse after todays BP & I didn't think that was possible!
Apparently these headaches can last anywhere from a few days, to a few months, & even a few years! I think the longest case is 8 YEARS!
Amy, I really hope you start feeling better soon!
198419 tn?1360242356
Hi there,

You happened upon an old post.

If you can, please post your question using the green post a question button. I'm afraid all won't see you here.

If you see this response, please know I'm so sorry you have the headache! Does it subside when you lay down? If so, it most likely is the dreaded leak.

Call the Dr. and in the meantime, stay flat as long as you can, drink plenty of fluid for at least 24 hours - there is a chance for it to heal that way. The other alternative to the leak is to go for the blood patch, but the Dr. who set up the LP should know what you are going through right away and provide recommendation....

Thanks for joining us!
Avatar universal
okay everyone, i had a LP last week Wednesday, and went to the E.R. on Sunday. The blood patch to me wasnt bad at all, but I was drugged up from whatever they put in my i.v. so there wasnt too much pain at all. Now I am feeling light headed and my back is still sore. I have to take tylenol which I've never had to take before in my life. My head still hurts but sooooo mildly compared to what it was, one tylenol does the trick, where as the LP made me walk around like a turtle trying to hide my head into my shoulders. Kisses to all of you that are experiencing the pain and severe frustration of not being able to move from the couch or bed. I was there with ya, and I hope I NEVER have to do that again..LP that is...blood patch was a relief (okay somewhat of a relief) smiles!
Avatar universal
Hi everyone,
I had a lumbar puncture done 2 1/2months ago, and got tinnitus in both ears the day after. I didn´t have a headache, but severe neck pain. Today I still have tinnitus, and my doctor says that a blood-patch won´t resolve that problem and therefor won´t give me one. Anyone have heard or have experienced same problem. Going crazy here:) Thanks a lot.
Avatar universal
I had that along with the headache. They told me that the neck pain and shoulder pain that I had was not associated with a spinal headache. After taking a muscle relaxer and throwing up they decided to do the blood patch and all pain subsided immediately. However now a couple of weeks later it looks like the pain has returned.
Avatar universal
How did it go?  I am on the same boat as you?
PLEASE REPLY FAST!!  How long did it take for headache to go away after the blood patch?
Avatar universal
had a lp on tues, did blood patch on thurs, i have a history of migraines and when they said headache was a side affecti knew i should have decided against lp. I cant believe how bad a spinal headache is, worse than any migraine i have ever had. the day after blood patch my headache was worse then before, it is saturday now, it has eased up a little but one fast move and i will be sorry. have been laying on my back for 5 days, certainly cant stay this way forever, dread when its time to take the dog out. i feel for anyone who has had lp, but why dont they just do a blood patch right when the do the lp, it would seem to make more sense then waiting for someone to suffer.
1902049 tn?1321624032
I Just had spinal injections done last Friday and have had a spinal Headache for 1 week now! I went to my family Dr. to be evaluated as I did not want to go back to the Dr. who hurt me with over 40 min.of extreamly painful injections ( over 20 )  I was the most painful procedure I have ever experenced in my life!
I went o my My Family Dr.and he had me lay flat on my back for a week and now he is sending me for a blood patch today that hopefully will work and take this incredibule pain away! After reading all these reports I am not to hopeful about the results! I hope You Feel Better Soon!
Bruce McCabe
Avatar universal
Just had a Lp/st/lumbar puncture/spinal tap done on Friday the 22nd  and I know they say it takes three days minimum for you to know you have a spinal leak....but I knew Friday night......not by the headaches (that came slowly on Saturday) but by other symptoms......and best advice I can give you its go to the BEST Emergency room/hospital in your area they will admidt you........ put you on iv pump meds (that won't help but they will knock you out some so you can get a lil rest not sleep) but the point is THEY WILL DO THE BLOOD PATCH THERE AND IT WILL WORK .......sounds to me like you have had some bad docs and trust me so did I .....and I had no resources with the same types of thing or circumferences that I had and so because of that I am going out on a limb and putting my email on here AND FOR ALL YOU CREEPS/PERVES//PSYCHOS ECT......I have two just like you no wait worse here at home with me WHO LOVE ME VERY MUCH AND UNFORTUNATELY DO BEFORE THEY THINK...ONE BEING ALSO A COMPUTER GENIUS SO PLSPLS
PLS don't try it it is not worth your time not here.....Amyloo....email me PS put in the sub its you lol
Avatar universal
I just received the epidural injection in my neck on Friday and Saturday I woke up with the worst headache of my life. I got a blood patch done and it did not work. Are they supposed to inject the blood patch where they put the epidural injection? My injection was in the back of my neck and they put the blood patch through my lower back? This does not sound right to me. I've been in tears with this headache for almost a week now. I just recently started an peal steroid the dr. Put me on today. Any help?
572651 tn?1530999357
Hi tiffp- sorry you are in such pain.  My understanding is the blood is injected in the area where the leak is occuring.  Call you doctor and let them know it didn't work and you need to have it done again.

I'm sorry you are in agony....
Avatar universal
i had an epidural the fifteenth of August and the next day had a head ache threw my neck up to the front of my head.  they sent me home unable to even hold my newborn baby.  breastfeeding is terrible if he does not latch rite on hearing him cry i so painful to hear. light hurts my eyes terribly, also walking to the bathroom is so painful.  by the time i get back to the bed im in tears!  i heard from relatives, not the hospital, about the blood patch and asked questions.  i got a blood patch the 18th and had immediate relief.  then on the 20th my symptoms came back slowly and i went to get a second blood patch that night.  it eased the pain mostly not all the way, then when i woke up the next day (today) it is hard to walk to the bathroom again and all my symptoms are slowly coming back. i called my family doctor an she had her nurse call me back an say if the 2nd patch did not work then it is not from spinal leakage.  but if it was not from spinal leakage then why would it have releived the pain for some time?  i dont understand, is there any chance that i could still heal from the second blood patch? is there anything i can do besides lay on my back and drink caffeine??  any insite or opinions would be great thank you.

Avatar universal
how has some of your spinal headches started? were these procedures thats you all had to undergo or was it caused by something that went wrong? Karyn
Avatar universal
I feel for you.  I went through the same thing a few weeks ago.  The headache is unreal.  It took 5 days laying flat until I began to feel better.  They wanted to do a blood patch but I said , "no way, no one is coming near my spine again".  Anyway, because I work in the medical field (Nurse Practitioner) and have connections, I was advised to do a few things such as drink caffeine, eat salty foods (pulls fluid back into the vascular system) and drink fluids.  Other than that, there is not much else you can do but ride it out.
Good luck and I hope you feel better soon.
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