Patient Comments: Lumbar Puncture - Side Effects


Did you experience any side effects from a lumbar puncture? Submit Your Comment

Comment from: Huda, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: December 07

I had severe headache, neck pain and nausea for more than 1 week after my lumbar puncture (LP). It has been more than 1 month now and I still have moderate headache and neck pain. I don’t know what to do. I have already low lying cerebellar tonsils and maybe it was better not to go for LP. I had other symptoms also.

Comment from: Lulu , 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: October 11

This lumbar puncture procedure is horrible and nobody prepared me. I spent almost a week in bed, can’t do anything, and headache is horrible. Back and neck pain makes feel my head will fall out... I feel bloated, dizzy, and nauseous. I live with my son of 4 years age, and sometimes he gets scared because I can't move when he needs help. Almost a week, I can't cook, I am only ordering online with DoorDash, and some days they bring me incomplete order. I don't know how long this will take.

Comment from: B, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: September 02

I had a lumbar puncture to determine if an aneurysm was bleeding. The actual procedure was fine however no one prepared me for the pain I would soon experience. The headache, back pain, left ear pain and neck pain are worse than what brought me to the hospital in the first place. Extra strength Excedrin, caffeinated beverages and lots of water has really helped reduce my pain. I am also using Biofreeze to help with my neck spasms. It has provided some relief. I no longer have headaches, ear pain or lower back pain, just neck pain, stiffness and neck spasms.

Comment from: Lewis, 19-24 Male (Patient) Published: August 24

I had a lumbar puncture to get rid of excess fluid outside of the skull after a brain surgery. It didn't do anything while at the hospital, on the long drive home the swelling went down, and a few hours later it went away completely. I hope this is normal.

Comment from: Shari75, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: August 20

I am on day 3 post lumbar puncture. I originally had it done to rule out a bleed in my brain. I was given no advice or instructions other than to lie down for half an hour, which I did. I’m now suffering from a horrible headache whenever I am upright. I can’t walk about without being in pain! I have been on bed rest for 48 hours but not much improvement. My general physician said that this can happen, but this is totally affecting my life. I have small children that need me!

Comment from: Sam, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: April 06

I had a lumbar puncture (LP) years ago. I went home, became unwell, went back to Accident and Emergency. My symptom of not being able to sit up scared me so much I was admitted to a ward and treated like I was putting it on. The next morning I was asked to move from the bed to the chair, I physically couldn’t. When I lifted to a certain height it was as if I lost any physical action. They dragged me into the chair and whilst they made my bed then left me in the chair, I became more unwell until I vomited and fell out the chair.

Comment from: Tamerfill, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: March 25

I had a lumbar puncture last week, 16th March, 2020. Two tries and in. Since experiencing lumbar pain I'm finding it difficult to get up. However, I push myself to get up, yet the pain makes it difficult. I'm high risk COVID 19. No signs of infection from either, yet pain is becoming intolerable. Like the lady above said you have to lie down to get some pain relief. Wonder how long this goes on for. I do want to avoid hospital at all costs.

Comment from: Vanessa T, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: February 05

I had a lumbar puncture Friday, I have had the most painful headache since and have to lie on my back for any relief. I did go back to the hospital on the Sunday, and they give me anti-sickness drugs and morphine. All was fine, but once I got home and the morphine wore off I’m in the same agonizing pain and don’t know what to do. I feel the pressure in my neck and head, and physically can’t do anything as the pain is so severe.

Comment from: Emmy, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: September 17

I had a lumbar puncture about 4 hours ago, have a horrid headache, and depending how I move it feels like someone is standing between my shoulder blades crushing me. I have had morphine but it has done nothing to the headache.

Comment from: Betty4891, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: September 10

I had a lumbar puncture (LP) a few years ago. During the procedure the doctor performing it hit a nerve causing my leg to fly up in the air. It was very painful. I did not think much of it. I had several LPs to confirm a rare disease that I have. I had an MRI of my spinal that revealed a hemangioma at the location of the lumbar puncture. In addition to painful spasms and muscle cramping I have severe pain at this site now as well.


Meningitis refers to inflammation of the brain. See Answer
Comment from: Lc, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: August 20

I had a lumbar puncture (LP) done 8 days ago and experienced no head ache. However, my lower back gets numb when I lie down and then my left leg feels weak. I’ve also been experiencing neck tension and sometimes my shoulder, arm, neck and pinky feel numb. Not sure if it is all because of the LP but it all started after the procedure was done. Wonder if anyone else has experienced this.

Comment from: Hazel, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: August 14

I had a lumbar puncture to check for a bleed on my brain, and I had a hemorrhage. I have now 7 days later got to cope with severe shocks in my buttocks and legs when I move; also very painful stiff neck. I went back to the hospital, they said everything was fine, and sent me home. I am struggling going to the toilet as well, dread having to sit down as it sends shocks through me that make me scream.

Comment from: Andrea , 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: August 13

I had a lumber puncture in the emergency department, the doctor tried unsuccessfully. On the 2nd attempt he got a nerve and it sent extreme pain down my left leg. Two week on I’m still in extreme pain down my left side and it feels weaker. I have been to my general physician and will follow this up.

Comment from: Skee, 35-44 Male (Patient) Published: June 27

I been having neck pain since the lumbar puncture while standing up. When I lie down the pain goes away.

Comment from: JakesMom604, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: June 13

I got a lumbar puncture (LP) done yesterday and it was beyond painful. They told me afterwards that I would be taken on a gurney and spend 1 to 2 hours in recovery to avoid post LP headache and would get the rest of the papers. I forgot them because when done I was told I could go home even though my head was exploding with pain, I was about to puke, and was dizzy. They walked me to door and bye! Since then my head and back are viciously painful, and I am nauseated. I was told to call them if I had any of these things why call them, I don’t trust them. When I was told to go to the emergency room originally I was tested for meningitis.

Comment from: noel , 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: May 20

I had a lumbar puncture to rule out meningitis. The process was very painful, a nerve was hit as my right leg shot straight out and felt as though it was on fire. Immediately I got the worst headache, and I could not stand or sit up for about a week after. About two days later I had this weird feeling in my ears as though everything was muffled like I was under water. I was very nauseous and lost my appetite. I felt a lot of pain in my lower back but I was able to lie on my side with some discomfort.

Comment from: ss , 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: May 20

After my lumbar puncture I experienced a severe headache that lasted for about a week. I was unable to stand or sit up, because when I did an enormous amount of pressure was felt in my head. The only way to relieve the pressure was lying down on my back.

Comment from: Yves, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: April 03

The process of lumbar puncture was very painful to bear. I recovered within 45minutes to an hour after it. The next day my head still had this annoying dull headache. It’s been 6 days and it still persists. I feel rested waking up but as the day progresses I feel sleepy and tired. I had a weird sensation in my ears 2 days after the lumbar puncture, like being under water, listening to noises muffled but low in sound. I have lower back ache, dull but feels like when one has period cramps with back pain, and constant travel sickness.

Comment from: Brooke, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: February 25

I have had several lumbar punctures (LP) as I have a history of intracranial hypertension (also called pseudotumor cerebri). Twice, I have had the post LP postural headache (relieved by lying down, hurts to sit up or stand). I had a blood patch after the first one. I am currently on day 4 of bed rest. I am concerned about the risks of a blood patch and am trying to wait out the headache. Unfortunately, I also have a connective tissue disorder that is likely delaying the natural repair of the hole.

Comment from: Momof2girls, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: February 05

I had a lumbar puncture because of severe migraines and questionable symptoms like multiple sclerosis (MS), one year ago this month. My neurologist has given up on the ruling out of things or confirming MS, and I’m now almost bedridden some days. He has since suggested my just going to a psychiatrist. Besides my symptoms feeling like MS or something, and me feeling crazy and embarrassed, my back, one year after the lumbar puncture, still twinges at the exact site several times a day. It ranges from weird to pain.


Lower Back Pain: Symptoms, Stretches, Exercise for Pain Relief See Slideshow
Comment from: Wirelessfreeq, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: January 10

In 2015, I had a spinal tap done. I was discharged too soon after the lumbar puncture. Three days later I was crying on the floor. I was rushed to the emergency room again and they drew blood, spun it, and re clotted the puncture location. In the simplest of terms, SIH is a low-pressure headache. Spontaneous intracranial hypotension literally means that there is low spinal fluid pressure in the brain. It doesn't feel low, it feels like you can’t stand up. Lying down is all that works.

Comment from: Lisa, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: December 27

I had a lumbar puncture in the emergency room on December 11 due to high fever and headache. The procedure was a success. No meningitis. My headache lasted for about 1 week. It’s been 2 weeks and now my lower back is in severe pain. No back pain previously. I am just wondering who else has had the back pain, what helped the pain, and how long the pain lasted.

Comment from: Soni, 19-24 Female (Patient) Published: December 21

I just had a lumbar puncture done a day ago to test for meningitis. I was ok immediately after that, but a few hours later I was experiencing the worst headaches upon sitting or standing, and even now 2 days later I am bed-ridden with severe back pain that prevents me from bending or lying on my side. Upon stirring and standing I get hit with the worst pressure behind my eyes and extreme headache that only goes away once I sit down.

Comment from: Jmac, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: December 14

I had my lumbar puncture about a year ago. It was an awful procedure. It lasted 30 minutes and during the procedure, there were a few times where the needle must have touched some nerves as my left leg from the buttocks to the toes just fired. The only way I can describe it was that it felt tingly, hot, and chilly all at the same time. I could literally feel it spreading down to my toes. It hurt, but was numbing at the same time! I had severe headaches and could not leave bed for 6 days.

Comment from: Beth, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: December 04

I was ordered a lumbar puncture because of weakness in my hands and legs, and falling. This was done on Thursday. I lay there for 2 1/2 hours after having the procedure before being discharged. I was told to drink lots of caffeine and fluids. I was fine that day for the rest of the day. But by Friday, I was so sick to my stomach. I had a repetitive headache that eased only after throwing up. Today is Saturday, my back hurts, I have a headache and I feel so disconnected and spacey.

Comment from: Verance, 3-6 Female (Caregiver) Published: November 29

My son (5) can't walk. He had a lumbar puncture done on Monday and has been bent and crying since.

Comment from: Denise c, 19-24 Female (Patient) Published: August 31

I had 2 lumbar punctures last December. The first one was done wrong without numbing me, and the second one was a complete success. But for the past months I’ve suffered from the worst back pains. Sometimes I can’t even get off my bed. I feel as if I were being stabbed with the needle all over again and this time as if it was left inside. I wonder if anyone else has experienced similar pains.

Comment from: Iminpain, 19-24 Female (Patient) Published: August 24

After the lumbar puncture my whole lower back and stomach hurt to the point where I’m almost in tears.

Comment from: Chandler JR, 19-24 Male (Patient) Published: August 23

I’ve had two lumbar punctures in my lower back. No headaches, I have leukemia so it is a part of my chemotherapy. I was just feeling weak and spacey, not focused for a couple days.

Comment from: Special K, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: August 10

Yes, I experienced severe headaches after my lumbar puncture.

Comment from: Klouise, 19-24 Female (Patient) Published: July 31

I had meningitis when I was 2 year old, meningococcal which is the worst type. They had performed a lumbar puncture but had done it wrong twice, luckily they got the 3rd right. Anyway whenever I'm ill or as in the case now where I've had an MMR vaccine, it swells up where they have done it, putting pressure on my spine making it very difficult and painful to do anything. I'm now 24 year old and have severe back pain most days. I can handle it, it's mainly when I'm poorly that it is difficult.

Comment from: Aine, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: July 27

I had a lumbar puncture 2 days ago. I am experiencing nausea, dizziness and a severe headache since. Feeling spacey!

Comment from: Lillie87 , 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: June 19

I had a lumbar puncture two days ago and my head is still hurting really bad. I haven’t noticed any other side effects.

Comment from: CollinG, 25-34 Male (Patient) Published: June 04

For the whole day after my spinal tap (lumbar puncture) I had a pounding headache only when I sat up or stood up. It was really weird. I was completely fine and pain free when lying down.

Comment from: Jlhixs, 25-34 Male (Patient) Published: May 30

I had bad back pain for several days after the lumbar puncture.

Comment from: Marco, 35-44 Male (Patient) Published: May 29

Yes, I have had lower back pain and headache for two days, and also a little dizziness after my lumbar puncture.

Comment from: MF, 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: April 25

I had the lumbar puncture today at 11 AM and was back at work by 3 PM. But I feel fine.

Comment from: Barbara D., 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: November 11

I had a lumbar puncture for the intracranial hypertension and blood clot. While I was on my side my legs jumped. Ever since then, if I turn a certain way I get a pain in my lumbar area. Now, I have had high blood pressure for over a week, 192/90, and a head ache and neck. I am worried it is the same thing again.

Comment from: SAC, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: February 05

During the lumbar puncture procedure I felt the pressure in my head lessen, not sure if that is normal.

Comment from: Mom, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: September 19

I have had an extremely runny nose and dry cough after my lumbar puncture.

Comment from: carolynrhone54, 13-18 Female (Caregiver) Published: May 22

I carried my grandkid 2 the emergency room (ER). The ER doctor did a lumbar puncture on her. I did not feel comfortable with him doing it but he was a doctor. We are paying for it now, she is in the children’s hospital. She had severe headache, could not walk on her own, high fever, high blood pressure, and kidneys messed up. CT scan, MRI lumbar puncture, all negative. I feel the ER doctor messed up somewhere, he should have gotten someone more professional in that field.

Comment from: LjO, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: April 06

I had a lumbar puncture for investigation of increased intracranial pressure and 3 days later I had a brain hemorrhage.

Comment from: Disebo, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: March 22

I am experiencing side effects of lumbar puncture till today, since last month.