Answering Questions about Injections for Facet Joint Pain

What are facet injections? 

Facet (ˈfas-ət) Injections are injections of local anesthetic to numb the small joints of the bony spine in the neck or back. Often, facet injections are performed for diagnostic purposes to determine whether or not these joints are causing neck or back pain. If the facet joints are causing your pain, treatment (radiofrequency) is then directed to these specific sites.

Who is a candidate for facet injections?

Anyone with persistent neck or back pain, who has not responded to epidural steroid injections or conservative therapies (i.e. chiropractor, anti-inflammatory medications, physical therapy).

How is a facet injection performed?  

Facet injections are safely performed on an outpatient basis. After sterilizing the area, a small amount of local anesthetic is used to numb the skin. Needles are then placed through the numb area to the desired locations using real-time x-ray (fluoroscopy) to ensure precise placement. A small amount of local anesthetic is injected and the needle is withdrawn. The procedure itself typically takes 15 minutes followed by a short observation period.

For more information on facet injections, talk with your Premier Pain practitioner, or call our clinical department at 732-380-0200.