Facet joint injections are performed to relieve neck pain or back pain, or to confirm if the facet joint is the source of pain.
Facet joints are small joints at each segment of the spine that provide stability and help guide motion. Facet joints can become painful due to arthritis, back injury, or mechanical stress.
What happens during a facet joint injection?
During the fact joint injection, the skin is first made numb with a local anesthetic (lidocaine).
Then a needle is guided to the facet joint that is to be treated. The placement of the needle may be confirmed with fluorscopic imaging (live x-rays).
The needle is then used to inject a local anesthetic for the immediate relief of pain and a corticosteroid to provide a long-lasting reduction in inflammation.
During the procedure, one or more facet joints may be injected.
The immediate relief of pain confirms the doctor's clinical suspicion that the particular facet joint was the source of pain.
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Last updated: 5/13/2022