What to Expect During a Facet Joint Injection

Facet joint injections are a common treatment for back and neck pain, and they can provide relief from a variety of conditions. Before undergoing the procedure, it's important to understand what to expect during the injection and the potential side effects. At Fairoaks Medical Building and Montrose Rode Building, our team of experienced doctors will begin by injecting a small amount of local anesthetic through a very small needle. This will cause a slight pinch and burning sensation, but the area will quickly become numb.

After numbing the skin, the doctor will use a needle guided by a fluoroscope to place it close to the facet joint. This may cause some pressure at the injection site, but no pain should be felt. If any pain is experienced during the procedure, more local anesthetic will be injected as needed. When the injection is complete, you may feel some pain at the injection site, which is normal.

It's important to take it easy on the day of the injection, but you should be able to resume your normal activities the next day. The pain relief provided by facet joint injections is usually not permanent and may require ongoing treatment depending on the results of the first injection. The medicinal anesthetic and corticosteroid cocktail used in an injection into the facet joint provides double relief. It numbs the area and reduces inflammation, which can help restore pain-free movement.

However, results can vary quite a bit, as some patients may find that facet injections have an almost immediate effect, while others may not see any improvement. It's also important to note that facet joint injections can have side effects such as infection, nerve damage, or allergic reaction. We'll thoroughly review all possible side effects with you before proceeding with the procedure and address any questions or concerns you may have. Facet joint injections are a good way to strengthen your back muscles and determine if the injection was given into the correct facet joint.

It also gives you time to strengthen the supporting tissues around your facet joints through specific exercises and physical therapy. The Spinal Diagnostics team knows when facet joint injections can help restore pain-free movement, and we've helped many patients regain their quality of life with this relatively simple treatment.

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