Facet Joint Pain

Interventional Pain Management Specialist located in Houston, TX
Facet Joint Pain

Facet Joint Pain services offered in Houston, TX

Facet joint pain can occur in any part of your spine, affecting your mobility and independence. At Houston Pain Services in Houston, Texas, board-certified interventional pain management specialist Adrian C. Dumitru, MD, and the team offer various treatments for facet joint pain, including radiofrequency ablation and corticosteroid injections. Call Houston Pain Services today to make an appointment or book online.

What is facet joint pain?

Facet joint pain affects your facet joints –– the flexible pieces of tissue that connect your vertebrae, allowing you to bend and twist. 

Almost everyone experiences facet joint pain because of the natural aging process. Over the years, general wear-and-tear causes the facet joints to break down, increasing your risk of pinched nerves, herniated discs, and other spine-related health problems.

What are the symptoms of facet joint pain?

Symptoms of facet joint pain include:

  • Aches
  • Burning or tingling sensations
  • Stiffness
  • Muscle spasms and weakness
  • Pins and needles sensations

You may have difficulty bending, twisting, or lifting as the condition worsens.

When should I see a doctor about facet joint pain?

Make an appointment with Dr. Dumitru and the team if you have back pain that lasts for more than a week and doesn’t improve with ice and rest. That’s particularly true if your symptoms affect your ability to exercise or do other routine activities.

How is facet joint pain diagnosed?

Dr. Dumitru reviews your medical records and asks about your symptoms, including when the pain started, where it occurs, and what it feels like. Dr. Dumitru gently presses on your spine and the surrounding skin, checking for sensitive areas. Then, he has you stand, sit, and walk back and forth, assessing your gait, posture, and range of motion.

Dr. Dumitru orders diagnostic imaging, X-rays, CT scans, and MRIs. These procedures allow him to get a better look at your vertebrae, facet joints, and intervertebral discs. 

How is facet joint pain treated?

At Houston Pain Services, Dr. Dumitru and the team treat facet joint pain using minimally invasive measures. One of the most effective treatments is radiofrequency ablation.

During radiofrequency ablation, Dr. Dumitru carefully inserts a thin needle into the area of your back where you experience pain. To do that, he uses a real-time imaging technique called fluoroscopy, ensuring precision.

After placing the needle, Dr. Dumitru inserts a microelectrode through it. He then heats the microelectrode with a radiofrequency current. The current stops the nerves in your facet joint(s) from sending pain signals to your brain, providing lasting relief.

Often, symptoms don’t return for 6-12 months* and sometimes longer. 

Call Houston Pain Services today to learn more about the treatment of facet joint pain, or make your appointment online.

*Individual results may vary.