Facet Joint Syndrome

Lower Back Pain Management in Texas

The facet joints are small joints on the back that connect vertebrae. It is thanks to these joints that the spine is one of the most flexible structures in the body. Facet joint syndrome is a condition that causes these joints to flare up, reducing their flexibility and causing pain. It is caused by an underlying condition- usually osteoarthritis.

Symptoms of facet joint symptom may include:
  • Tenderness in the back
  • Pain the back, shoulders, thighs, or buttocks
  • Difficulty turning your head
  • Difficulty standing or maintaining an upright posture

The symptoms of facet joint symptom vary depending on which joints are affected, so it is rare that a patient experiences all of the above symptoms at once. The preferred method of diagnosing facet joint syndrome is with a facet joint injection. This involves injecting a facet joint with a pain-relieving agent. If the injection helps soothe the pain, this is an indicator that facet joint syndrome is at the root of the problem.


Treatment Options

As with most pain conditions, you should explore minimally invasive treatments before resorting to surgery. Posture correction and massage can sometimes be adequate treatment in mild cases. If the problem is more serious, participating in a physical therapy program may be necessary.

Facet joint injections and nerve blocks can help provide temporary, long-term relief from the pain for patients with a chronic problem. When these treatments fail, surgeries that involve destroying the damaged tissue may be called for.