Did you know facet pain is confirmed through diagnostic injections? There is a procedure that is minimally invasive and nonsurgical that can be performed to reduce low back pain. Andrew Kitterman, PA-C at Prairie Spine is providing information regarding facet pain and radiofrequency ablations. Read the article below to learn more about back pain and what advancements Prairie Spine has made to ensure an accurate diagnosis and treatment plan for you. If you have any questions or to schedule an appointment please contact us at 309-691-7774.
Low back pain can be caused by any number of different anatomical structures in the back and can be complex and difficult to identify and treat. Back pain can originate from the musculature, intervertebral discs, and even between the small joints that articulate between the bones of the spine (vertebrae). These joints are known as facets. Facet joint syndrome can be a significant source of back pain especially in aging patients with a history of arthritis and chronic low back pain. Over time the joints begin to have degenerative changes. The cartilage inside can be worn down and become inflamed resulting in signals being sent to pain receptors. These pain signals are relayed through nerve endings to the brain and are perceived as pain.
When facet pain is confirmed through diagnostic injections there is a procedure that is minimally invasive and nonsurgical that can be performed to reduce low back pain. The procedure is known as a radiofrequency ablation and uses electrical current through radio waves to heat up the nerve tissue. By burning this tissue the nerves can no longer relay the pain signals to the brain, thus reducing low back pain. Patients have varying degrees of pain relief with the radiofrequency ablations (RFAs) however the results can last anywhere from 8-13 months, with some patients having lasting relief over the course of years. Over 70% of patients who have positive diagnostic injections have relief with radiofrequency ablation. As with most procedures, there are slight risks of infection and bleeding at the insertion site, however, the procedure is typically very well tolerated with few complications. Set up an evaluation today with a skilled clinician at Prairie Spine and Pain Institute to see if you are a candidate for this procedure.