Facet Joint Injections \ Medial Branch Block

Facet Joint Injections and Medial Branch Nerve blocks are similar, minimally invasive procedures that are used to help doctors diagnose and treat pain that is likely linked to the facet joints or surrounding attached nerves, called the medial branches.

In both of these procedures, an area of skin on the back is numbed in preparation for the use of a needle to be guided towards either a facet joint or a medial branch. A fluoroscope, coupled with a contrasting dye, will likely be used by the doctor to help ensure the needle is placed properly – a vital part of the procedure. The joint or nerve will be injected with an anesthetic mixed with a steroid, that will help the doctor determine what nerve or joint may be involved in your specific issue. This injection may be used in multiple levels of the spine.

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If pain begins to subside, the doctor can begin to confirm whether the joint or nerve was the source of your pain. This pain relief will likely be short-lived, lasting a few days and fading away once the anesthetic wears off. The steroid portion of the injection reduces swelling and pain – but is not effective until a few days later.

After a successful injection, it may be determined that you’re a candidate for a longer-term pain relief solution. Our staff will always be upfront and honest about your options, and work closely with you to find the treatment plan or procedure that will best fit your needs.

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