What are Facet (zygapophysial) Joint Injections?
A lumbar facet joint block is an injection of local anesthetic (numbing medicine) into one or more of the small joints located along the side of each vertebrae on both sides of the spine in the lower part of the back. Multiple injections may be performed, depending upon how many joints are involved.
Cervical, Thoracic and Lumbar Facet Joint Injections?
Facet joints are small joints at each segment of the spine that provide stability and help guide motion. The facet joints can become painful due to arthritis of the spine, a back injury, or mechanical stress to the back.
A cervical, thoracic or lumbar facet joint injection involves injecting a small amount of local anesthetic (numbing agent) and/or steroid medication, which can anesthetize the facet joints and block the pain.
The pain relief from a facet joint injection is intended to help a patient better tolerate a physical therapy routine to rehabilitate his or her injury or back condition. The injection procedure may also be called a facet block, as its purpose is to block the pain.