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21150 W Capitol Dr.
Brookfield, WI 53072

Phone: 262-366-0665
Fax: 262-649-3226

Facet Joint Pain

A lifetime of walking, standing, lifting, and twisting causes significant back pain for nearly 80% of all adults. For many, the facet joints are often the primary source of their suffering.

A facet joint is the joint between two vertebrae. Facet joints allow your vertebrae to move while keeping your spine properly aligned. Like all joints, they are subject to wear and tear and begin to deteriorate as you age, causing pain.

Symptoms of Facet Joint Pain

  • Pain or tenderness in the lower back
  • Pain that increases with twisting at the waist or bending backward and extending the lower back
  • Pain that moves to the buttocks and hips or the back of the thighs - usually a deep, dull ache
  • Stiffness or difficulty with certain movement, such as standing up straight or getting up out of a chair
  • Difficulty rotating the head
  • Neck pain
  • Headaches
  • Shoulder pain

Diagnosis & Treatment

Facet joint problems are usually treated with a combination of conservative methods, including pain medication, exercise and physical therapy, posture correction, activity modification, and steroid injections. If your pain doesn't improve, you may be helped by an outpatient procedure called Radiofrequency Neurotomy, also called Radiofrequency Ablation or lesioning. This approach completes the continuum of care for back pain sufferers who want a minimally invasive alternative to surgery.

How is facet pain diagnosed?

The most definitive diagnosis for determining your pain can be made by a medial branch block. This involves injecting a numbing medicine into or very near the nerves that supply the facet joint. If there is a significant decrease in pain (80% or more), it confirms that the joint is causing the pain.

Facet Joint Syndrome

Learn more about Facet Joint Syndrome by viewing the educational video below.

Facet Joint Pain Treatment


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