How to Treat Facet Syndrome Successfully

17 Sep How to Treat Facet Syndrome Successfully

Facet Syndrome occurs as a result of friction between the bones contributing to the tenderness, swelling, stiffness and persistent chronic pain in the spine, or any part of the spine.

According to San Antonio pain management, millions of Americans suffer from facet syndrome and is usually seen in adults over the age of 50 and in some cases at a younger age as a result of massive injury. The condition is caused by normal wear and tear and often results in arthritis.


Facet syndrome develops in the small joints, located between each vertebra called facet joints. The facet joints are in constant motion in order to support the spine with stability and flexibility for daily activities including walking, running, bending, sitting and twisting. As these joint surfaces are in line with cartilage, this allows them to glide easily over each other. The cartilage, however gradually begins to wear away as the result of the natural aging process, leading to the growth of bone spurs in many cases. This gives rise to chronic pain in the spine.

The joint becomes swollen, painful, inflamed and stiff. Additionally some other risk factors contributing to facet syndrome include excessive weight, overuse due to sports, family history of the syndrome, presence of diseases (gout, arthritis, or infections), and damaged stem due to injuries including whiplash and trauma.


Patients with facet syndrome often experience chronic pain in the beginning and end of the day or with a change of weather. They may have difficulty twisting and bending the spine. While the lower pain could radiate into the buttocks, pelvic area and thighs, neck pain can influence the shoulders, arms and head causing aches at the base of the skull, behind the eyes and slight ringing sensation in the ears. Standing and Sitting for a long period of time may exacerbate the condition and could lead to weakness or numbness in your legs or arms.

Conservative Treatment:

The doctors may recommend a well-rounded rehabilitation program and physical therapy to treat facet symptom and reduce pain, inflammation, improve the mobility and most importantly provide strength to help you manage your daily activities with ease and greater ability.

San Antonio Pain Management

In addition, getting involved in everyday exercises help strengthening the back and abs that support the spine. It also helps in absorbing shocks before it reaches the joints of the spine. Consider walking more, swimming, and biking to increase circulation, motion of the body. Exercise also helps in maintaining weight that helps in reducing stress on the joints. It is advisable to opt for exercise in water to loosen up stiff muscles and joints.

Physical therapy including massage and muscle stretching can also be very helpful. One can also opt to use ice pack to decrease blood flow to the affected area and reduce swelling.

Plus, Ultrasound and electro stimulation could b suggested to treat muscle spasms.

Prescribed Medications: 

Anti-inflammatory medication NSAIDs such as ibuprofen and the more recent COX-2 inhibitors (e.g. Celebrex) can also help lessen the symptom.

Spinal Injections:

If the conservative treatment brings no good, the physician may recommend spinal injection to be delivered into your facet joint using cortisone for temporary pain relief that lasts for weeks or sometimes, months.

For further information call (210) 202-4030.


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