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Facet Arthritis Specialist

The Spine Group

Interventional Pain Management Specialists located throughout Texas

Degenerative changes to your spine as you get older may lead to conditions like facet arthritis, causing chronic neck or back pain. At The Spine Group ,throughout Texas, fellowship-trained interventional pain management physician Eric Miller, MD, and his team provide comprehensive treatment options for facet arthritis to help you get long-term pain relief. Call the office or book an appointment online today.

Facet Arthritis Q & A

What is facet arthritis?

Facet arthritis is a spine condition that occurs from the degeneration of the cartilage that separates the bones in your facet joints.

Your spine is made up of a series of moveable interconnected vertebral bones. Each vertebral bone has two facet joints. These joints link the bones together, allowing you to twist and bend your back.

Cartilage lines each of your facet joints. Over time, the cartilage that separates your facet joints thins and wears away. Without the cartilage to protect the joint, you may develop bone spurs or enlargement of the joint.

These joint changes may cause inflammation and pain. 

What are the symptoms of facet arthritis?

Facet arthritis might not cause any symptoms. However, you may start to experience neck or back pain following a fall or heavy lifting. 

Symptoms of facet arthritis may include:

  • Dull, aching sensation in the lower back
  • Back pain that radiates into the buttocks
  • Neck pain that radiates into the shoulder or head
  • Painful movements
  • Pain that worsens when standing 
  • Pain that worsens during inactivity

Symptoms of facet arthritis are similar to what you might experience with a herniated disc. Getting an accurate diagnosis is important so you get the most effective treatment.

How is facet arthritis diagnosed?

When you visit The Spine Group with concerns about back pain, the interventional pain management experts conduct a comprehensive evaluation to find the source of your pain.

To diagnose facet arthritis, they ask detailed questions about your symptoms, including location, the type of pain you feel, and the activities that make your pain worse or better. They also take imaging tests to rule out other conditions that might explain your symptoms.

If facet arthritis is suspected, the pain experts at The Spine Group perform a diagnostic injection to confirm their suspicions. This injection contains a local anesthetic and corticosteroid. 

Your pain management physician diagnoses your facet joint arthritis if you experience a 75% reduction in pain after the injection.

How is facet arthritis treated?

The Spine Group takes a patient-centered and collaborative approach to care. They customize your facet arthritis treatment plan based on the severity of your symptoms. Treatment may include:

  • Posture therapy
  • Physical therapy
  • Anti-inflammatory medication
  • Facet joint injections
  • Nerve blocks
  • Radiofrequency ablation
  • Stem cell therapy

Your interventional pain management physician works closely with you and your other health care providers to ensure you get the most effective treatment. 

Call The Spine Group or schedule an appointment online today.