Facet Syndrome (Spinal Joint Arthritis)

 

Facet arthritis is a syndrome of the small zygapophysial joints or synovial joints from the cervical (neck), lumbar (lower back), and thoracic (upper/middle back) regions and is one of the root causes of localized or axial back or neck pain. The facet joints are well lubricated and allow for nearly 20% rotation in the lumbar, cervical and thoracic regions. They are also well innervated by small medial branch nerves that carry pain signals, often manifesting in back pain or spasm.

Causes

  • Osteoarthritis
  • Trauma
  • Bone Spurs or Reactive Bone Formation

Diagnosis

  • History and physical exam. Pain is often localized to the lower back and neck. Evaluation of the spine reveals pain and limitations with range of motion.
  • Imaging studies such as Radiographs, MRIs, CT Scans and Bone Scans can help diagnose Facet Syndrome.
  • Diagnostic nerve blocks (also called medial branch blocks) can be diagnostic if they provide significant short-term pain relief.

Management

  • Non-steroidal anti-inflammatories and other analgesic medications.
  • Physical therapy to strengthen core muscles.
  • Radiofrequency neurotomy of the small medial branch sensory nerves that innervate the facet joints.
  • Spinal decompression surgery.

Thousands of patients chose Doctor MineHart at Advanced Pain Institute.
Call 818-962-0559 today!

Advanced Pain Institute

Contact Us

*New Patients Welcome!

Call Us Today:
Arcadia: (626) 445-2371
Encino: (818) 784-3125

Locations

638 W Duarte Rd Suite 18,
Arcadia, CA 91007

16250 Ventura Blvd #165,
Encino, CA 91436