Epidural Headache - How Long and Solutions?

Updated on May 07, 2010
J.S. asks from Kalamazoo, MI
4 answers

The doctor messed up my epidural (wet tap) and as a result I have gotten an epidural headache 2 days after giving birth (gave birth Monday morning, got the headached Wednesday morning, it is now Friday morning). How long can I expect this to last? Doctors said 7-10 days but I wanted to hear what other moms experienced. My headache is excruciating as is my neck (unless laying down).

Solutions? We did a blood patch Monday afternoon to try to counter the headache but that obviously didn't work. I'm drinking a lot of water and caffine, and alternating between ibuprofen and precocet pain medicine. Any other suggestions for dealing with the pain?

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So What Happened?

After enduring the headache for 3 days I returned to the hospital for a 2nd blood patch. It didn't work instanteously, but rather about 12 hours later (overnight). Spent the next 2 days trying to lay down as much as possible so I didn't disturb the blood clot, and now feeling back to normal (can at least function to take care of my toddler and my newborn). Lower back is still a bit sore/stiff. In hindsight, maybe wish I had gone for the natural childbirth...

More Answers


answers from Barnstable on

Try getting adjusted at the chiropractor too.



answers from Fresno on

My friend had the same thing happen to her and the blood patch didn't work. Basically she stayed laying down as much as possible and drank tons of Starbucks. It went away in about 4 weeks.



answers from Seattle on

I just wanted to say I am SOOOO sorry. I had one too and I know how miserable you are. I originally was given a caffeine drip and that made the headache go away. They also scheduled me for a blood patch for the next morning which I did anyways, even though the headache was still gone. I didn't want to risk it coming back. I don't know if the caffeine drip is an option from your doctor or not? Good luck!



answers from Chicago on

I also had epidural headache with 2nd baby, but while I was still in hospital, they did blood patch and within 15 min, was much better. Docs told me it might take up to two weeks to have it go away naturally. Not sure about solutions as the patch worked for me, but I feel your pain, it was awful!

try to get as much rest as you can, and have someone help you with your newborn.

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