Using Injections to Treat Facet Joint Pain

Sports Injuries and Facet injections - New Jersey

Jul 21, 2015 @ 08:45 AM — by Aron D Rovner, MD 
Tagged with: Facet Joint Pain | Injection Therapy |

The team at New York Spine and Sports Surgery is able to address a whole host of issues that affect the back. This is an important part of our state-of-the-art approach to sports medicine, and it's what makes us a leader in pain relief and treatment.

We'd like to use this particular post to focus on facet joint conditions and the use of injection therapy to address these matters.

About Facet Joints

Facet joints are the joints located on both sides of the vertebrae on the back of the spine. The joints are situated where adjacent vertebrae overlap. It is thanks to facet joints that complicated movements of the spine are possible.

Problems and Conditions That Affect the Facet Joints

When a person experiences a health issue that affects the facet joints, this can mean a number of things. For one, movement of the spine may be severely limited and affected. Pain and stiffness in the back may also occur, resulting in limited mobility and other serious problems.

Issues with the facet joints can occur in the lower back (the lumbar region), the middle portion of the back (the thoracic region), and the neck (the cervical region).

What are facet joint injections?

Facet joint injections are one option for treating problems related to a person's facet joints. The injection consists of a local anesthetic to help relieve pain as well as an anti-inflammatory steroid in order to reduce the issues with the joints themselves. It's an ideal minimally invasive option for dealing with facet joint pain and other related back pain issues.

Who is an ideal candidate for facet joint injections?

The best candidates for facet joint injections are people who have noticed issues with their range of motion and soreness related to their back, particularly stiffness and pain when turning the body or the head. Injection therapy is considered when regular over-the-counter remedies for pain have failed to yield satisfactory results.

What to Expect from Facet Joint Injection Therapy

During facet joint injection treatment, patients can generally expect to feel a slight pinch and some pressure as the injection is administered. This pain is temporary and a sign that the injection has been administered properly. Facet joint injections are outpatient procedures, and they generally only require about 10 to 15 minutes to perform.

How long does it take for the facet joint injection to start working?

This can vary from patient to patient. For the most part, patients can expect to feel results after a few days, though it can take up to a week before patients notice substantive pain relief from the facet joint injection.

How long do facet joint injections last?

This varies from patient to patient and very much depends on the nature of the facet joint issue being addressed. If the pain relief is only temporary, a back pain specialist can administer additional facet joint injections in the future to assist in pain management, often to be considered in conjunction with another form of treatment so that the root cause of the back issue can be properly addressed.

Contact New York Spine and Sports Surgery

For more information about spinal cord injuries and how we can treat them, be sure to contact our sports medicine and surgery center today. The team here at New York Spine and Sports Surgery will work closely with you to ensure a restoration of your health, wellness, mobility, and quality of life.