Posts Tagged facet joint
Facet Joint Health, Low Back Pain and Upper Back Pain review by KBNI Houston, Kingwood, Spring, Sugarland, Katy, Pearland, Baytown, Beaumont, Clear Lake, Memorial City, the Woodlands
Posted by admin in arthritis, back pain, baytown, beaumont, chiropractic, chiropractor, Clear Lake, conroe, facet joint, Galleria, houston, Humble, imaging, katy, Kingwood, low back pain, lumbar spine, Memorial City, Missouri City, nerves, pain, Pearland, physical exam, physical therapy, Port Arthur, spinal, spinal column, spinal discs, spine, spondylolisthesis, spondylolysis, Spring, Texas City, Tomball, upper back pain, woodlands on January 21, 2016
Facet Joint Health, Low Back Pain and Upper Back Pain
Simply put, the facet joint links the vertebrae of the human spinal column and allow for the articulation of the spine. When they facet joints are not functioning properly, or when they become degenerated, develop arthritis, or slip, they may be the cause of low back pain and upper back pain. In addition to providing mobility, the facet joints also help stabilize the spinal column by being oriented in such a way that they decrease the chances of preventing forward vertebral slippage (spondylolisthesis). The ends of the facet joints are covered in cartilage, which allows for pain-free operation over a normal range of motion (bending, twisting, lifting, sitting, standing, etc.). While the cartilage does break down naturally over time (in this manner resembling cartilage in other parts of the body), the facet joints are still quite durable if direct physical trauma (such as from an accident) is not an issue. The condition known as spondylolisthesis exists when one vertebral body is slipped forward upon the vertebral body below. This is also known as anterolisthesis. When the vertebral body is slipped backward upon the vertebral body below, the condition is known as retrolisthesis. Spondylolisthesis may occur as a result of degenerative changes of the facet joint. When a patient has a condition known as spondylolysis, the patient is prone to develop spondylolisthesis. Spondylolysis is a condition where there is a gap in what may be considered the roof over the spinal canal. It may occur from an injury, or a person may be born with it. When this condition occurs, the facet joint is no longer able to help support the vertebral bodies from slipping forward upon each other, and instead, all of this burden is placed upon the intervertebral disc, which separates two adjacent vertebral bodies. Spondylolisthesis, whether anterolisthesis or retrolisthesis, may be related to low back pain or upper back pain, as it relates to possible instability of the spinal column.
With all of these essential functions, the facet joints are a little-known but important means to preventing low back pain and upper back pain. These joints, along with spinal discs (the shock-absorbing pads between our vertebrae) help relieve pressure on the spinal nerves during routine motion, lowering the incidence of nerve compression (and accompanying sharp low back pain). Over time, however, the facet joints begin to break down just like any other mechanical component in the human body. Repetitive bending, lifting, and twisting can all accelerate the natural degenerative processes in the human spinal column, and the facet joints are no exception. The cartilage on the ends of the joints breaks down as spinal discs become thinner, harder, and less capable of bearing shock as we grow older. All of this leads to higher incidence of compressed (pinched) spinal nerves, which in turn can cause muscle weakness, numbness, low back pain, upper back pain, and decreases in overall mobility.
As such, maintaining the health of our facet joints as we age should be a priority for everyone. Patients with chronic low back pain and upper back pain are advised to explore the option of physical therapy or chiropractic designed specifically for the spine. Typically, spine-specific physical therapy programs use a regimen of core-strengthening exercises to build muscles along the spinal column and throughout the torso. Stronger core muscles are more capable of relieving load-bearing stress on other degenerated portions of the spine, such as the discs and facet joints. Continuing physical therapy at home will also help back pain patients maintain optimal muscle mass as they age, which will in turn lower the incidence of injury, low back pain and increase overall mobility. Patients are advised to consult their physicians prior to beginning any physical therapy regimen to ensure they do not have any structural deformities that would be exacerbated by an exercise program. Imaging tests (x-rays, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) ) may be necessary to confirm this, depending on the physician’s findings during your physical exam. Standing low back x rays in flexion and extension will show whether spondylolisthesis is stable, or whether it moves.
Low back pain is one of the most common reasons for individuals to visit their doctor, and for loss of work. Finding the source of the low back pain is important, before the low back pain can be addressed, and treatment begun. Causes of low back pain include the facet joint, the spinal disc itself, the ligaments attached to the low back spinal column, the nerves leaving the spine in the low back, and the muscles which attach to, and create movement in the low back.
The Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston TX takes care of patients in Houston and the surrounding areas, including Pearland, Galleria, Beaumont, Baytown, Clear Lake, Port Arthur, Katy, the Woodlands, Spring, Memorial City, Humble, Kingwood, Conroe, Tomball, Missouri City, Texas City, and Texas Medical Center (TMC)
Patients suffering from a low back pain or neck pain, or who have been told they may require a low back surgery or neck sugery, can
contact the Kraus Back and Neck Institute at
……. Or visit www.SpineHealth.com to schedule an appointment online
Keywords: facet joint, low back pain, back pain, physical therapy, spinal column, spondylolisthesis, spinal, Houston, Pearland, Galleria, Beaumont, Baytown, Clear Lake, Port Arthur, Katy, the Woodlands, Spring, Memorial City, Humble, Kingwood, Conroe, Tomball, Missouri City, Texas City, TMC, Texas Medical Center
Spinal Facet Joint Pain presented by KBNI Houston, Katy, Woodlands, Sugarland, Galleria, Pearland, Kingwood, Spring, Memorial City, TMC
Posted by admin in arthritis, back pain, baytown, beaumont, chiropractic, chiropractor, core strengthening exercise, disc degeneration, exercise, facet joint, fusion, houston, low back pain, lumbar, lumbar fusion, neck pain, pain, physical therapy, rhizotomy, spinal fusion, sugarland, woodlands on September 23, 2014
SPINAL FACET JOINT PAIN
A facet joint is a link between our vertebrae within our spinal column, and can be the cause of pain within the spine. Regarding spinal anatomy, their ends are covered in cartilage, which allows for the relatively pain-free articulation of the spine during routine motion (sitting, standing, twisting, bending, lifting, walking, etc.). Over time, however, the cartilage covering the facet joints breaks down naturally as we age. Heavy lifting, poor weight management, improper lifting technique, and too much sedentary activity can all accelerate the breakdown of facet joint cartilage, increasing the chances of compressing nearby spinal nerves and causing extremely sharp back pain. The spinal column can be the source of mechanical pain.
In many cases, imaging tests (x-rays, magnetic resonance imaging) will be necessary to confirm the diagnosis of a facet joint-related spinal back pain. Your doctor will have to first rule out muscle tears and muscle spasms caused by oxygen-starvation in your back muscles (often occurring as the result of too much time spent in a sitting or standing position, which keeps muscles in the back in a highly tensed state). While a compromised facet joint is certainly a cause for concern, by no means is the problem untreatable. Many patients are able to successfully mediate their pain levels at home, without having to explore the possibility of spinal back surgery.
In order to treat back pain caused by degenerating facet joints, most patients effectively mediate their pain levels using over-the-counter non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). Pain medication usually restores enough temporary mobility to explore other long-term treatments, such as physical therapy. Patients may use a physical therapy or chiropractor / chiropractic regimen to develop muscles along the spinal column, which in turn will relieve load stress from compromised spinal discs (the shock-absorbing pads between our vertebrae) and facet joints alike. During your physical therapy or chiropractor / chiropractic regimen, several checkups will likely be necessary in order for your physician to accurately gauge your progress and recommend changes to your course of treatment.
If the cartilage has worn to the point where nearby spinal nerves are at risk, back surgery may be necessary to preserve a patient’s long-term health and mobility. Regular spinal nerve compression can lead to muscle weakness, sharp back pain, and eventual nerve damage and loss of sensation in other parts of the body. If you experience any of these symptoms, seek medical attention as soon as possible to determine if parts of your spinal discs or facet joints are responsible. If back / spine surgery is needed, your physicians can offer excellent advice on your post-operative care period, including incremental increases in physical therapy to preserve (and in some cases improve) patient mobility.
Generally, spinal facet joint pain can be diagnosed by having a physician (spine surgeon, neurosurgeon, pain specialist) perform a facet joint block. This procedure “numbs” the nerves (medial branch of nerves) traveling to the facet joint. If the block is successful at relieving the pain, it can be concluded that the pain is coming from the facet joint. At that point, a more permanent facet joint rhizotomy, in which the nerves to the facet are destroyed (with thermal coagulation, also known as a rhizotomy) , may be of good benefit (after undergoing two trails of a facet joint nerve block). A fusion of the spine (ALIF, TLIF, XLIF, PLIF, DLIF) can also help with pain coming from the facet joint, as the fusion will immobilize the joint.
Physician experts at the Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston, TX, have significant experience in diagnosing and treating spinal facet joint pain. The Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston TX cares for patients in Houston and the surrounding areas, including Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Tomball, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center (TMC) and other Texas TX cities including Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio and Austin.
Keywords: facet joint, spinal, pain, Houston, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sugarland, Sealy, Pearland, Baytown, Beaumont, Tomball, Galleria, Humble, Conroe, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Memorial City, Galveston, Texas Medical Center (TMC), Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin