While it would be absurd to suggest that family doctors should be aware of the more obscure side effects of all the drugs they prescribe, this situation is rather different. Bendroflumethiazide is one of the commoner drugs prescribed for raised blood pressure and it is well known to cause diabetes in almost 10 per cent of those taking it. So for her family doctor to fail to make the connection is definitely a bit odd. She did the sensible thing and binned her pills. Gratifyingly, her “diabetes” has since cured itself, and for good measure, her blood pressure has also remained satisfactory.
This is a rare complication that may occur if a small hole is made in the fibrous sac and does not close up after the needle puncture. These small holes are only made in less than 1% of epidural injections and usually heal on their own. The spinal fluid inside can leak out, and when severe, the brain loses the cushioning effect of the fluid, which causes a severe headache when you sit or stand. These types of headaches occur typically about 2-3 days after the procedure and are positional - they come on when you sit or stand and go away when you lie down. If you do develop a spinal headache, it is OK to treat yourself. As long as you do not feel ill and have no fever and the headache goes away when you lay down, you may treat yourself with 24 hours of bed rest with bathroom privileges while drinking plenty of fluids. This almost always works. If it does not, contact the radiologist who performed the procedure or your referring physician. A procedure (called an epidural blood patch) can be performed in the hospital that has a very high success rate in treating spinal headaches.