Epidural Blood Patch
An epidural blood patch is when a small amount of blood is used to seal a puncture site in the spine as a result of a spinal tap procedure . The patch helps restore normal pressure in the spinal fluid.
Call Your Doctor
After you leave the hospital, contact your doctor if any of the following occurs:
- Continued pain or discomfort after 24 hours
- Signs of infection, including fever and chills
- Limb weakness, numbness, or unusual sensations
- Trouble emptying bladder or bowels
- Stiff neck
In case of an emergency, call for emergency medical services right away.
An epidural blood patch is when a small amount of blood is used to seal a puncture site in the spine as a result of a
spinal tap procedure
. The patch helps restore normal pressure in the spinal fluid.
Spinal Tap Copyright © Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.
What to Expect
Reasons for Procedure
This procedure is done to relieve a spinal headache that does not go away on its own. A spinal headache can develop after a spinal tap procedure when too much spinal fluid leaks internally and reduces pressure in the spine.
This procedure is quite common and relief is often immediate.
Complications are rare, but no procedure is completely free of risk. If you are planning to have an epidural blood patch, your doctor will review a list of possible complications, which may include:
- Bad reaction to the anesthesia, contrast dye solution, or sedative medication—light-headedness and/or wheezing
Factors that may increase the risk of complications include:
- Taking blood thinners prior to the procedure
- Current infection
Be sure to discuss these risks with your doctor before the epidural blood patch.