Facet joints are the paired joints that connect vertebrae in the spine. They are important for both range of motion and stability.
Over time and with physical stress these joints can erode, enlarge and become arthritic. Facet arthropathy can further cause back spasm and referred pain that are frequently indistinguishable from sciatica or discogenic radicular pain.
Facet Medial Branches are the small branches of spinal nerves that innervate these joints. Facet blocks are an important component injection technique for diagnosing and treating pain from facet arthropathy.
Facet medial branch blocks help to reduce pain from joints and muscles and facilitate physical rehabilitation. Radiofrequency thermocoagulation (RFTC) medial branch rhizotomy which is utilized to ablate these small nerve branches for longer-term pain relief.