Steroid injections for sciatica: Mild, short-term relief

Published: February, 2013

Injections of corticosteroids can temporarily relieve the pain of a herniated disk, but offer little long-term benefit, finds a study in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

When a spinal disk bulges outward, or herniates, it may compress the nerves that branch outward to the rest of the body. This can cause shooting pain in the leg, known as sciatica. A common treatment for acute sciatica is injecting a corticosteroid drug near the bulging disk. This calms the inflammation and pain.

To continue reading this article, you must log in.
  • Research health conditions
  • Check your symptoms
  • Prepare for a doctor's visit or test
  • Find the best treatments and procedures for you
  • Explore options for better nutrition and exercise
Learn more about the many benefits and features of joining Harvard Health Online »