Putting An End to Spinal Pain

Any individual who has experienced chronic back pain knows the sensation is far from pleasant. While temporary discomfort can be expected after a long day of work or even sleeping incorrectly, for some people, back pain is a constant presence. A variety of causes can contribute to chronic back pain, but in many cases, the problem is the lumbar facet joints. When the critical joints are damaged, pain can persist and may require medical interventions.

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What are the lumbar facet joints?

Essential for maintaining stability and flexibility in the spine, the lumbar facet joints are 2 joints located in the lower back. When the joints become diseased or damaged, a common side effect is chronic back pain. While some people can manage discomfort with over-the-counter (OTC) pain medications or non-medical at-home interventions, other individuals may need to seek additional treatments.

Causes of joint pain

Often, facet joint pain is a byproduct of another condition. For example, people with back pain may also suffer from osteoarthritis (OA), traumatic injury, joint instability, excessive pressure on joint tissues, or inflammation in the joint lining. If the back pain doesn’t improve from non-invasive solutions after trying for at least 3 months, facet joint injections may be considered.

How do injections help?

According to research, facet joint pain is the primary cause in roughly 67% of people with neck pain, 48% of people with upper back pain, and 45% of people with lower back pain. Facet joint injections are simply steroid injections that work to reduce inflammation. While injections are designed to directly address pain issues, some physicians may use the procedure to evaluate and diagnose the extent of the damage in the area.

What to expect

As with most injections, the treatment is considered a minimally invasive process. In most cases, the procedure takes less than 30 minutes and is treated as an outpatient event. A person receiving facet joint injections will receive a local anesthetic and be awake throughout the procedure. However, sedation is an option if requested. For most people, minimal pain is experienced during the process besides the discomfort of the initial anesthesia injection.


For most people that opt for facet joint injections, relief is experienced within a few days of the procedure. Most recipients will experience the benefits for at least 3-6 months from the injection date. Although the injection can be repeated, most people shouldn’t receive more than 3 injections yearly.

Put an end to back pain

Most patients experience improvement after undergoing facet joint injections. However, people opting for the procedure should remember that injections are only a temporary solution. Additional treatments may be necessary to maintain long-term pain relief. To determine the right course of action, consider speaking with a physician specializing in back pain.

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