IS ARTHRITIS
BECOMING AN ISSUE?

This can be due to age and we
can help with the pain.

Facet Joint Syndrome

This condition is a deterioration of the facet joints, which help stabilize the spine and limit excessive motion. The facet joints are lined with cartilage and surrounded by a lubricating capsule that enables the vertebrae to bend and twist.

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Pain presents itself in many different ways, at different times and in many cases is triggered by specific activities.

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What is Facet Joint Syndrome?

Facet Joint Syndrome occurs when the facet joints get swollen and become a source of pain due to injury or arthritis. The facet joints are the connections between the bones of the spine. The nerve roots pass through these joints to go from the spinal cord to the arms, legs and other parts of the body.

These joints also allow the spine to bend and twist, and they keep the back from slipping too far forward or twisting without limits. Like the knee joint, they have cartilage to allow smooth movement where two bones meet. The joints are lined with the synovium and have lubricating joint fluid.

What are the causes of Facet Joint Syndrome?

Often, facet joint syndrome is a form of arthritis, for which the root causes are unclear. What is known is that the aging process and severe injury can cause articular cartilage to deteriorate. As bones of the adjacent joints begin to rub together, inflammation is created. This inflammation causes pain, stiffness, and loss of function.

What are the symptoms of Facet Joint Syndrome?

The age-related deterioration of cartilage can irritate the small nerves that innervate the joint capsule. Inflammation also promotes the development of bone spurs (osteophytes), which are bony projections that grow on the periphery of the joints. These bone spurs often remain asymptomatic, but they also might grow large enough to compress or irritate nearby nerve roots. If this happens, symptoms such as pain, tingling, numbness, and muscle weakness might occur.

If the affected joint is in the neck, it may cause mild to severe headaches and one may experience difficulty moving the head. Twisting the neck from side to side may also be a source of pain. Stiffness, tenderness, and muscle spasms are common symptoms and sometimes radiating pain can occur down the arm or arms.

If it is in the back, it may cause pain in the lower back, buttocks or thighs. Stiffness, tenderness, and muscle spasms are common and sometimes radiating pain can travel down the leg or legs. Pain may also be present when twisting or arching the lower back.

If the facet joint becomes too swollen and enlarged, it may block the openings through which the nerve roots pass, causing a pinched nerve. This condition is called facet hypertrophy.

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Pain presents itself in many different ways, at different times and in many cases is triggered by specific activities. Modern Spine Medicine will be happy to answer your questions in conjunction with a personal phone call follow up with one of our doctors.

Please answer the questions as accurately as possible.

About Modern Spine Medicine

As a multi-disciplinary team, we understand that pain can change and destroy a person’s life. It is discouraging to watch our patients, friends and family suffer in pain. We know we can make a difference and help provide the best education and options available. We offer Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery, namely Endoscopic Microdiscectomy and Endoscopic Rhizotomy procedures. Our non-surgical treatments offered are therapeutic and diagnostic injection medicine therapy. These include epidural steroid injections, non-steroidal injections, nerve blocks and ablations, joint injections, and trigger point injections. We also offer many other procedures for pain relief. Stem cell therapy or regenerative medicine are great option for healing and have become very popular with patients over the past few years. We offer many options as well for stem cell therapy and PRP (Platelet Rich Plasma) and our Specialists can discuss all treatments.

We are passionate about giving life back to our community every day. We specialize in most types of pain, including neck and back pain, arm and shoulder pain, leg, hip and knee pain, as well as headaches and migraines. We treat pain from Car Accident or Wreck Injuries, Sport Injuries, Workman’s Comp and daily wear and tear.

We are excited to be known by our patients and referring Primary Care Physicians as Top Doctors and Top Pain Specialists in Phoenix. We are also proud to have great relationships with other pain centers like Arizona Pain Specialists, The Pain Centers of Arizona, Arizona Pain Centers, Advanced Pain Management, Sonoran Spine, Barrow Neurosurgical Institute and many neurospine surgeons and orthospine surgeons.

Modern Spine Medicine at Arizona Pain Treatment Centers has been serving the greater Phoenix area since 1997. We have patients under our care that live in Phoenix, North Phoenix, Scottsdale, Peoria, Glendale, Maryvale, Tolleson, South Phoenix, Mesa, East Mesa, Tempe, Chandler, Ahwatukee, Gilbert, Queen Creek, San Tan Valley, Apache Junction, Tuscon, and even Globe.

We are commitment to making a difference and being the difference in all of our patient’s lives and their family and friends lives. Thank you!

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